15 May 2008


Tuesday night was the Christie's auction that I mentioned in this post. I worked late that night so I watched the auction online in between meeting prep. It was so intense to watch the auction live since I couldn't hear what was happening (no speakers on my work computer, argh!). All I could do was watch the price of each item go higher and higher. When the Kaufmann House came up the auctioneer spoke for awhile, probably talking about the history and design importance of the house. The bidding started somewhere around 9 million and climbed up to 15 million. Then the price just stayed there while the auctioneer was talking to someone off to the the right of him. Not having sound to hear what was happening I had to sit in anticipation and wonder what was happening. I envisioned someone bursting into the auction shouting "Stop! I must have that house! I will pay a bazillion dollars for it!" then the room would gasp. Of course that didn't happen but the mind wanders when you can't hear what's happening. The price finished at 15 million plus then with the buyer's premium it was 19 million in the end. This surprised me because I really thought that it would sell for much more. Who ever purchased the house got it for a steal.

The rest of the auction was very entertaining since there were many fantastic pieces that were going for insane amounts of money. There was a painting in the auction by Mark Rothko (one of our most favorite artists) that went for 50 million. It was the second highest amount ever paid for a Rothko piece. You can see the results of the entire auction here. Plus highlights of the auction here and here.


**update 28 May**
The sale fell through. On May 23, the president of Christie’s said that “the contract has been terminated by the seller by reason of a breach of its terms by the buyer.”

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