Vincent van Gogh Cabanes bois parmi les oliviers et cyprès

The billion dollar sale week saw this Van Gogh painting sell for millions | Source: Christie's

Van Gogh, Monet and Beeple Artworks Sell in Christie’s Billion-Dollar Auction Week

Auction house Christie’s closed its 20th/21st Century Art Evening Sales to realise an incredible combined total of A$1.5 billion.

Spread across three sales, masterpieces from iconic artists including Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, Cy Twombly, Paul Cézanne and Beeple went under the hammer for eye-watering prices.

The billion dollar sale week was headlined by the single-owner evening sale, The Cox Collection: The Story of Impressionism which saw businessman and philanthropist Edwin Lochridge Cox’s collection of masterpieces sell for approximately A$456 million.

Vincent van Gogh- Cabanes de bois parmi les oliviers et cyprès

Lot sold: Approx. A$98m

Translating to Wooden Cabins among the Olive Trees and Cypresses, this oil on cavas painting is a post-impressionist depiction of exactly that. Capturing the vibrance of France’s Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, the painting is dominated by golden hues and short brush strokes. According to The Art Newspaper, the piece was expected to sell for around A$55 million and went on to almost double its estimate. The successful bidder for this piece paid an incredible A$98 million, making it the second highest sale price for a Van Gogh.

Paul Cézanne- L’Estaque aux toits rouges

Lot sold: Approx. A$76m

L’Estaque aux toits rouges or L’Estaque with Red Roofs is one of Cézanne’s most defining depictions of L’Estaque, a French fishing village near Marseille. The oil on canvas painting was created in the 1880s and sold for around A$76 million; more than A$20 million above the low estimate.

Claude Monet- Le bassin d’Argenteuil

Lot sold: Approx. A$38m

Selling for A$38 million, Claude Monet’s Le bassin d’Argenteuil was painted in 1874 and is one of the landscapes considered as “a high point of Impressionism” according to Christie’s. Depicting boats along the Seine, Le bassin d’Argenteuil has been exhibited at a number of museums, from Paris to New York.

Gustave Caillebotte- Jeune homme à sa fenêtre

Lot sold: Approx. A$73m

Translating to Young Man at his Window, Jeune homme à sa fenêtre is considered as one of Caillebotte’s emblematic works. Recognised as one of the great paintings from the impressionist movement, this work sold for a record price for the French artist: A$73 million. The buyer of this Caillebotte masterpiece was The Getty Museum in Los Angeles.

Cy Twombly- Untitled (1961)

Lot sold: Approx. A$44m

Painted in 1961, this work from abstract expressionist artist Cy Twombly is filled with “spots of colour” and “deliberately left sparsely populated of gesture”. Sold by Robert Mnuchin, a collector who has had the piece in his collection for close to 20 years, Untitled fetched approximately A$44 million.

…the graceful loops, swirls and pictographic symbols are evidence of Twombly’s celebration of mark making.


Jean-Michel Basquiat- The Guilt of Gold Teeth

Lot sold: Approx. A$55m

Standing at 2.4 metres in length and over four metres in width, Jean-Michel Basquiat’s The Guilt of Gold Teeth sold for A$55 million at the 21st Century Evening Sale at Christie’s. The large painting depicts Baron Samedi, a spirit of Haitian Vodou.


Lot sold: Approx. A$40m

Perhaps one of the most intriguing pieces up for auction at Christie’s 21st Century Evening Sale was Beeple’s kinetic video sculpture, HUMAN ONE. Selling for around A$40 million, HUMAN ONE is an NFT presented in a 3D box lined by LED screens which displays the “first portrait of a human born in the metaverse”. Designed to evolve creatively over the course of Mike Winkelmann’s lifetime, the piece is “a dynamically changing hybrid physical and digital piece”.

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