Bidding war drives up Francis Bacon work value at £75m Sotherby’s auction

09:01 27 June 2013

A central London auction house last night saw works by British contemporary artists including Francis Bacon and David Hockney sell for millions of pounds.

A 1966 triptych portrait of Bacon’s friend, muse and lover Isabel Rawsthorne went for £11,282,500 while the first work the artist ever sold, his historic Head III, was battled for by six collectors, driving the price to £10,442,500.

It had been estimated to sell at somewhere between £5million and £7million at the Sotheby’s auction yesterday evening.

The triptych was purchased by an anonymous buyer and Head III went to an American private collection.

Fifty-four years ago, just across the road from Sotheby’s at the Hanover Gallery in St George Street, the same work fetched £150 at Bacon’s first commercial show.

Alex Branczik, head of Sotheby’s London Contemporary Art Department said last night: “Tonight’s sale was all about the quest for quality - quality across categories - from the modern masters to the new generation of artists.

“We offered some great historic works of art and achieved some great prices for them, as buyers went down the connoisseurial route - buying with intelligence and passion.

David Hockney’s colourful tribute to his home country, Double East Yorkshire, had an estimated value of £3million, but sold for £3.4million to a private collector in Asia. Altogether, works sold at the auction last night totted up £75million.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London news

Thursday, July 2, 2015
Forensic officers at the murder scene (Pic credit: Hannah McGrath)

A man has been shot dead near Wembley in the early hours of this morning.

Thursday, July 2, 2015
Sussex Gardens W2

A gas cylinder caught fire and ‘exploded’ in Paddington this afternoon, leading firefighters to create a 200 metre exclusion zone in the area which caused traffic chaos.

Thursday, July 2, 2015
Missing: Shaheed Forde-Bryan (Picture: Met Police)

Shaheed Forde-Bryan from Rainham, east London has not been home since Sunday June 14 and police are appealing for help to locate him.

Thursday, July 2, 2015
The Royal Free's air conditioning may have accidently been pumping out hot air instead of cold

Sick and elderly patients said they suffered “sauna-like” conditions while being treated for life-threatening illnesses at the Royal Free Hospital, Hampstead after air conditioning units stopped working yesterday.

Thursday, July 2, 2015
Em Ford was told she was 'digusting', 'gross' and 'ugly as f*ck'

A short video by a London-based former model who suffers from acne showing all the insulting comments people left on her blog has gone viral.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Good times with Greenall's!

Good times with Greenall’s, a Great British gin sponsors Great British racing.

Read more
Escape to the picturesque sights of Cornwall

Summer is finally here, and what is the number one holiday location in the UK during the warmer months? Cornwall, of course!

Read more
Adrenalin junkies, this one's for you!

An icon of British engineering and a consistent favourite of James Bond, there are few names quite as legendary in motoring as Aston Martin.

Read more