The competition for private sales among the leading auction rooms will step up during the coming weeks as both Sotheby’s and Christie’s hold exhibitions at their new private galleries in London.
Barely a few minutes walk from each
other, Sotheby's are extending their S|2 brand by constructing a
new space in St George Street, just opposite the back entrance of
their main Bond Street premises. Meanwhile Christie's will stage
their first selling exhibition under their 'Christie's Mayfair'
banner at the former Haunch of Venison Gallery, also in Bond
Having acquired Haunch in 2007, Christie's
the well-known dealership in a surprise move back in March. The
gallery at 103 New Bond Street was then used as a viewing space for
45 works from the Homage to Chillida show before they
were offered at the Contemporary art auctions at their King Street
saleroom in June.
However, the exhibition opening on
October 9 indicates the future direction of the Bond Street
premises: a dedicated exhibition space for the Christie's private
sales arm. Entitled When Britain Went Pop!, Christie's
have teamed up with Waddington Galleries (now Waddington Custot)
and will show works by the likes of Richard Hamilton, Peter Blake,
David Hockney and Patrick Caulfield.
Billed as 'the first comprehensive
exhibition of British Pop Art to be held in London', it includes
works owned by private collectors, some of which (but not all) will
be for sale.
Opening the day after at Sotheby's S|2
is Joseph Beuys Revealed, an exhibition of works by the
German 'Fluxus' artist from a single-owner collection. It includes
an early bronze sculpture, Bett, from an edition of six, one of
which is in the Tate Modern collection.
As with S|2 in New York, Sotheby's aim
to hold regular selling exhibitions at this new gallery which is
currently under construction. The company's chairman of
contemporary art Europe, Cheyenne Westphal, said that they were
planning to host five shows per year curated by both Sotheby's
specialists and guest curators.
Furthermore, Sotheby's will be hosting
another exhibition this autumn at their New Bond Street rooms
featuring British art from the 1960s. Also a collaboration with a
well-known gallerist, in this case John Kasmin (the man who gave
David Hockney his first break 50 years ago), The New Situation
- Art in London in the Sixties will have a number of
works loaned from private collections with a selection offered for