Great art may be eternal. But great art prices are the product of their times. And right now, the business of selling multi-million-dollar paintings is being tested.
In the wake of Superstorm Sandy, Tuesday's election and the subsequent stock-market fall, Christie's kicked off the fall auction season with a sale that could generously be described as "subdued."
Fully 21 of the 69 lots failed to sell during Christie's Impressionist and modern art sale this week. The sale totaled $204.8 million, just shy of its estimate of $209 million. Among the works that didn't sell was a major Picasso bronze, which had been expected to top $10 million.