Cindy Sherman Sets Auction Record for Photograph

05/20/2011 10:40 AM |

Cindy Shermans Untitled #13 (1981), the most expensive photograph ever auctioned.
  • Cindy Sherman’s “Untitled #13″ (1981), the most expensive photograph ever auctioned.

Among the top lots in last week’s Christie’s contemporary art auction in New York were all the familiar fellas—Francis Bacon, Cy Twombly, Mark Rothko, Richard Prince, Robert Rauschenberg and eight Warhol lots accounting for $91 million of the evening’s $301 million total—but the biggest sale, symbolically, was Cindy Sherman’s 1981 photo “Untitled #153″ (pictured), which set a new record high for photographs at auction.

As ArtInfo’s Judd Tully reports, when Sherman’s reclining self-portrait sold to New York-based dealer Philippe Segalot for $3,890,500 (twice its $1.5-2 million estimate), it became the most expensive photograph ever sold at auction. The previous record-holder, Andreas Gursky’s “99 Cent II” (2001), went for $3.34 million at Sotheby’s in London in a February 2007 auction.

Another notable sale was Urs Fischer’s “Untitled (Lamp/Bear)” (2005-06), the large yellow bronze teddy bear-desk lamp mashup that’s spending the summer at the foot of the Seagram Building on Park Avenue. That piece—one of three editions of the work, the other two being yellow and blue—went to a telephone bidder for $6.8 million. Don’t worry, sad teddy will stay sitting in Midtown through September.

Cheer up teddy, youre worth millions!
  • Cheer up teddy, you’re worth millions!