Auction Record for Yinka Shonibare MBE

63 Artists from 14 Countries Represented

Half of the buyers new to Sotheby’s

Participants from 29 countries

Sotheby’s inaugural sale of Modern & Contemporary African Art realised £2,794,750 / $3,611,376) in London, a new benchmark for an auction in this category.*

A new record was set for the British Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare, when Crash Willy, from 2009, sold for £224,750 ($290,422). In 2010, this work was the centrepiece of the Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy in London and the recipient of The Royal Academy of Arts Charles Wollaston Award for ‘Most Distinguished Work’.

The most valuable two works in the sale were by the Ghanaian artist El Anatsui, whose tapestry of shimmering bottlecaps, Earth Developing More Roots from 2011, sold for £728,750 ($941,691), and the South African artist Irma Stern, whose still life of Sunflowers from 1942 made £416,750 ($538,524).

An exciting result was achieved for the South African artist Nicholas Hlobo, making his auction debut with a mixed media work which sold for £60,000, soaring over its pre-sale estimate of £8,000-12,000. The price achieved cements Hlobo’s place on the secondary market, now in tandem with his strong institutional presence following the exhibition of his work at the Centre Pompidou, the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Tate Modern, and the Boston ICA, among others.

Image: Nicholas Hlobo, Untitled, 2006, mixed media, rubber inner tube, ribbon, on paper, 86 x 115.5cm. Estimate: £8 000 – 12 000. Sold for £60 000.