The auction last night (February 12) made a £65.1m hammer total which was within the £61.2m-84.5m presale estimate. Overall, 44 of the 54 lots (82%) found buyers.
Bacon's Three Studies for a Self-Portrait was a late work from 1980, produced when the artist was 71 years old.
Estimated at £10-15m, it was perused by two telephone bidders and was knocked down to Mönchengladbach-based Jürgen Hall who has said the pictures will go on long term loan to an institution.
Elsewhere at the sale, there were artists records for Adrian Ghenie, Hurvin Anderson and Giuseppe Penone.
It was not such a good night however for Gerhard Richter. There were four works on offer, only two of which got away, both selling under estimate. Abstraktes Bild (769-1) of 1992 went for £7.25m against a £7.5m-9.5m, while the artist's photorealist masterpiece Wolke (Cloud) of 1976, sold for £6.75m (est. £7-9m).
The buyer's premium at Sotheby's is 25/20/12%.