Setting an auction record for the artist, a picture by Arthur Boyd (1920-99) was the top-selling work among the 60 lots of Australian and International paintings at Sotheby’s most recent sale in Melbourne.
Selling for Aus$1.4m (£972,220) on August
14, it provided a large slice of the premium-inclusive total of
The oil-on-tempera composition was from
Boyd's 15-work Bride series titled Bride Running Away,
painted in 1957. The mid-estimate price beat the auctioneers' own
record set at the same time last year when they sold The
Frightened Bride for Aus$1m.
Both paintings explore the theme of
indigenous and non-indigenous Australians, depicting an aboriginal
man and a white bride.
An Australian painting from the earlier
colonial period that proved much sought after at the sale was the
early 1790s watercolour, pen-and-ink-on-paper study of a
hook-billed shrike or grey butcher bird, painted by the so-called
Sydney Bird Painter.
The artist's natural history studies seldom
appear at auction and the opportunity was seized when the work was
bid to a multi-estimate Aus$180,000 (£125,000).
Grosvenor School Print
The international element of the sale
featured two works by the British Grosvenor School artist Sybil
Andrews, whose highly stylised modernist works are now so much in
vogue alongside other members of the printmaking school.
Her Skaters of 1953, number 55
from an edition of 60, realised Aus$26,000 (£18,055), while
Grader of 1959, number two from an edition of 60,
made Aus$12,000 (£8335).
The buyers' premium was 20%.
£1 = AUS$1.44