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Economic woes around the world have not dampened fervor for world-class art. Despite sluggish economic growth in the U.S. and an incipient economic crisis in the E.U., art sales continue to climb upward, equaling and at times surpassing numbers from the salad days of 2006 and 2007. The just-released statistics from Christie's about the company's performance in the first half of the year offer a case in point.
Overall, the company earned £2 billion ($3.2 billion) over the first half of the year, a 15 percent increase over last year's £1.7 billion ($2.6 billion). When asked about the potential impact of economic turmoil on future performance, a spokesperson for Christie's told ARTINFO that the auction house is "cautiously optimistic that the art market will continue to grow and prosper."
The top lot for the first half of the year was a self-portrait by Andy Warhol (1963-64), which sold in New York at the May Post-War and Contemporary evening sale, fetching $38.4 million. Overall, almost all numbers trended upward. The number of lots sold increased by 30 percent year-over-year. Private sales were up a whopping 57 percent. European sale totals topped £800 million ($1.3 billion), a 24 percent increase from last year. Sales in Hong Kong increased by 48 percent to total £296 million ($482.5 million). Read the full article here.
McGaw offers many different Warhol self-portraits.