The multi-vendor auction featured works from over 50 private collections, including 5 works that were sold to raise money for the Purple House dialysis clinic in Ernabella, SA.
Amongst the highlights were the sale of Kaapa Mbitjana Tjampitjinpa’s Papunya Tula ‘genesis’ board Goanna Dreaming, 1973 (Lot 11) for $18,400; Emily Kngwarreye’s striking 1996 black and white line Yam Dreaming (Lot 60) $52,900 and a rare fighting scene created in c.1880 by Colonial artist Tommy McRae for $43,700.
In her first outing with Cooee Art, experienced art auctioneer Anita Archer, was charming and effervescent throughout, injecting a sense of fun and humour into the proceedings. Archer juggled bids from Cooee Art staff on phones and laptops as well as the more than 50 people attending in the room. Sales over the internet accounted for 21.5% of purchases including five of the sale’s top lots. Absentee bids from the phones and on the auctioneer’s book absorbed 30% of sales, including four of the sale’s ten top lots while 48% of the lots sold to bidders in the room.
The sale began with a bang as 31 of the first 35 lots (93%) found new homes. By lot 50, the success rate was still a very respectable 78% after which a group of APY Lands works (lots 50-55) was offered without reserve to raise funds for the Western Desert Dialysis Appeal project, the Purple House. Though the second half of the sale struggled to maintain this cracking momentum, by Lot 111, 68% of lots had sold for a total value of $528,287 including Buyer’s premium. While many fine works in upper price categories failed to find a buyer on the night, the majority of these unsold works will continue to attract interest and sales over the next 6 months through Cooee Art’s two beautiful exhibiting galleries in Bondi and Paddington.
The sale did particularly well with works priced between $1,500 and $20,000, with 72% of these sold on the night. According to Industry insider, arts journalist Jane Raffan, who’s review of the sale appeared on the influential online publication the Australian Art Sales Digest, ‘Coo-ee Art MarketPlace’s second outing shows determination and dedication, and along with some refinement, that’s exactly what the market needs.
You are moving into a new apartment and may want a work of art to match your new space. You know the size and colours that will work for you and have an idea of the genre you are attracted to (modern, abstract, landscape, still life, expressionist, avant-garde). You also know how much you are prepared to spend. Art may be a luxury product but there are artworks to meet every budget. You probably intend to buy only one or two paintings, but if you are interested in art you could go on to buy a dozen over the next decade or two. You may be one of those rare individuals who are destined to become a serious ‘collector’ – only time will tell.
Perhaps you live in the countryside, outside of the city with its many commercial galleries. You may live in the city and be surrounded by them. It can be scary and intimidating, appearing to be ignorant, when seeking prices from staff who appear too busy to stop what they are doing. There are so many galleries and so many different types of art. It shouldn’t take forever to find a gallery, artist or artwork you like.
We are all comfortable buying clothes and books over the internet. Why not art?....
Only buy paintings that you genuinely like and get pleasure from. While purchasing an artwork may be a financial decision, the work must impart a great deal of pleasure. It is likely that you may hold on to it for your lifetime and pass it on to your heirs. While it is also possible that you will decide to sell an artwork quickly to take advantage of a perceived opportunity, you will generally fail to reap any significant financial reward if you sell an artwork too quickly. You have to be prepared to hold on to your art for up to 10 years, so you must buy something that you will love. To some this may sound like a given, but it is truly the most important factor in deciding on an artwork.
You don’t need a lot of money- you just need to know what you like… I buy art because I love it.
Lisa Paulsen, The Sydney Morning Herald, Spectrum, March 2011
Stay tuned for Tip Number 2 in the next issue.