• Bal Au Moulin de la Galette (1876) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir. Sold for $78.1 million in 1990 at Sotheby’s, New York.
The most expensive contemporary art painting ever sold 2008: The most expensive contemporary art painting ever sold at auction: Triptych (1976) by Francis Bacon. Sold for $86.3 million.
White Center (Yellow, Pink and Lavender on Rose) by Mark Rothko • 2007: The second most expensive contemporary (ie. post-war) painting ever sold at auction: White Center (Yellow, Pink and Lavender on Rose) by Mark Rothko. Sold for $72.8 million.
The highest auction price ever achieved by a sculpture 2007: The highest auction price ever achieved by a sculpture: the 5,000-year old Guennol Lioness, a 3 1/4-inch limestone lion from ancient Mesopotamia. Sold for $57 million. Source: visual-arts-cork.com
York Avenue HQ Illegal antiquities In 1997, a Channel 4 Dispatches programme alleged that Sotheby’s had been trading in antiquities with no published provenance, and that the organisation continued to use dealers involved in the smuggling of artifacts. As a result of this exposé, Sotheby’s commissioned their own report into illegal antiquities, and made assurances that only legal items with published providence would be traded in the future. Price fixing scandal In February 2000, A. Alfred Taubman and Diana (Dede) Brooks, the CEO of the company, stepped down amidst a price fixing scandal. The FBI had been investigating auction practices in which it was revealed that collusion involving commission fixing between Christie’s and Sotheby’s was occurring. In October 2000, Brooks…
Sotheby’s World Records Sotheby’s has achieved numerous world records for auctioned paintings and sculpture. 2004: The most expensive painting ever sold at auction: Garçon à la pipe, by Pablo Picasso. Sold for $104.2 million. A classic work of modern art. Source: visual-arts-cork.com