- In spite of swine flu fears, over 200 showed up, over 70% of lots by Larasati Auctioneers snapped up under an hour
- Strong demand for Asian art from Asian collectors; Asian market is important in challenging economic times
SINGAPORE, May 18, 2009 — Seasoned collectors in the third largest art auction market, Hong Kong, are buying into the future art icons by Larasati Auctioneers, as its segment in the 146-lots Asian Auction Week recorded 73% sales. The boutique collection featured for the first time, a Singaporean female artist, in an international fine art auction. Jane Lee’s The Little Red Painting, went to a Singaporean buyer at HK$33,040, following a dramatic bid that ended when a contesting phone-bidder lost the connection.
Asian Auction Week (AAW in short) is a first-time collaboration in Hong Kong by four of Asia’s leading auctioneers, K Auction from Korea, Kingsley Art auction from Taiwan, Larasati Auctioneers from Singapore, and Shinwa Art Auction from Japan. Featuring the best of East and West established and emerging art icons, more than 200 attended the AAW at the Grand Ballroom, Conrad Hong Kong, on May 15, with HK$18.5 million in sales (including premiums), with 77% of the 146 lots sold, mostly to Asian collectors. The boutique collection of emerging Asian art icons attracted fierce bids from collectors and investors as they bought up lots by up-and-coming Asian artists and established masters such as Suja, I Wayan who went under the hammer at HKD44,840 (128% above starting price) and Bui Xuan Phai at HKD70,800 (200% above starting price) respectively. Other top performers presented by Larasati included:
- Lot 175, Arie Smit’s “Heaven on Earth” went for HK$377,600, more than 150% above starting price
- Lot 169, Li Chen’s “Clear Soul” fetched HK$354,000, 154% above starting price
- Lot 173, Bui Xuan Phai’s “Hang Be Street, Hanoi” went for HK$70,800, more than 200% above starting price
- Lot 154, Agus Suwage’s “Mind Game” which was hammered off for HK$ 306,800, more than 120% above starting price
- Lot 162, Yoon Byungrock’s "Autumn’s Fragrance” which fetched HK$188,800, more than 130% above starting price
- Lot 165, Yi Hwan-Kwon’s “Windy day” which fetched HK$188,800, more than 150% above starting price
Thrilled by the response, Daniel Komala, CEO of Larasati Auctioneers, said: “The turn-out and sale results of the lots offered by Larasati at AAW have exceeded our expectations. Further, the hammer prices were testament to our ability to discover budding Asian art icons suitable for this economic climate. The old masters held their ground with some noteworthy bids on Affandi’s Self Portrait at HKD554,600 and Arie Smit’s Heaven on Earth, at HKD377,600 while contemporary artists like Masriadi and Suwaga excelled under the hammer at HKD 708,000 and HKD 306,800 respectively for their works.” The highlight of the auction belonged to Lee Dongi’s “Smoking”, whose price of $224,200 (including premium) exceeded the mid estimate by 182%. Southeast Asian old masters also did very well and Bui Xuan Phai’s “Hang Be Street Hanoi” and Affandi’s “Self Portrait” were sold for $70,800 and $554,600 respectively (inclusive of premiums), at 171% and 140% above their mid estimates. Hiroto Kitagawa’s “Miruko Hayakawa” was highly sought after and after several rounds of active bidding, sold at $118,000 (including premium), 136% above the mid estimate. Komala, who is also the spokesperson of the four partners behind the Asian Auction Week, added: “Buying a good piece of art at today’s market prices, which are about 30-40% lower, is an opportunity for everyone to indulge in a little bit of affordable luxury. We are heartened by the results of AAW and hope that it sends a very strong message to the art market that demand and consumer sentiment are picking up. More importantly, AAW is a joint effort by four Asian-based auction houses and is a window to the best Asian art selected by Asian auctioneers with insider expertise, insights and connections.” The collaborative effort by four of Asia’s leading auction houses aims to re-define the art auction landscape in Hong Kong and complement the existing offerings from international auction houses with the introduction of rising art stars from Asia. Key names to look out for include Aiko Nakagawa and Nawa Kohei from Japan, Lee Soujoung and Park Eunyong from Korea, Michelle Hwang and Li Chen from Taiwan, F.X. Harsono from Indonesia, and Ahmad Zakii Anwar from Malaysia.
For more details please see www.asianauctionweek.com
ABOUT THE AUCTIONEERS
Shinwa Art Auction (Japan)
Since its founding in 1989, Shinwa Art Auction holds about 30 auctions a year and cultivated a reputation in wide variety of areas, including Japanese paintings, ceramics, impressionist and modern art, jewellery & watches, European decorative art, wine and coin. In 2004, the company was listed on the stock exchange and is now the only publicly traded auction house in Japan and in 2006, Shinwa held its first contemporary art auction and since then has helped ignite a renewed interest in Japanese contemporary art. According to a 2007 survey, Shinwa is the largest auction house in Japan in terms of annual volume of sales with 31.1% market share. Shinwa explores the contemporary art field in depth by presenting works by artists who are already highly valued internationally as well as emerging ones. Shinwa Art Auction continues to demonstrate innovation and offer selection that truly represents the real and ongoing Japanese art scene.
K Auction (Korea)
Korea Premier Auction(K Auction), which is an auction house based in Korea, was established in 2005. Ever since the first auction held on Nov 2005, K Auction is running nearly 9 auctions a year. The company has grown to be one of the leading auction houses in Korea in merely 3 years, showing an average annual growth of 300% by 2007. On June 2008, a work of Vincent Van Gogh, Lying Cow was hammered at 2,950,000,000 KRW(USD 2,950,000), which was the first work of the artist officially introduced to Korea. The price has hit the record of the most expensive international art work in the Korean art market. K Auction offers a wide range of services such as online auction, art loan, educational programs about art and art market as well as fine art auction. The office is located in Chungdam-Dong, Seoul.
Kingsley’s Art Auction (Taiwan)
Since its establishment in February 2007, Kingsley’s Art Auction has been propelling Chinese cultural art onto the international stage. Artwork offered by Kingsley, consisting mostly of oil paintings and sculptures, include Taiwan local, Taiwan contemporary, and Chinese contemporary artwork. The artistic character of many of these works is a result of the unique political and ethnic experience of Taiwanese artists, and the popularity of such artwork in the European market renders them as sound investments for art collectors. Kingsley also uses the internet as a medium to build the bridge between Western and Oriental culture, and present the artwork to buyers all over the world. With over twenty years of managing the local art market, Kingsley presents a strength that is amplified by Taiwan contemporary and local artists to the world.
Larasati Auctioneers (Singapore)
Since Larasati’s first auction in Jakarta, Indonesia in 2000, the Asian-based auction house’s reputation has successfully extended its presence to six countries in the region, including Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, Japan and Indonesia. It recently opened an office in Hong Kong, the third-biggest auction market after New York and London. It also has an international sales room in Amsterdam. With a network of Asian-based art experts boasting keen insights and expertise into the modern and contemporary Asian art market, Larasati has an excellent track record for discovering future art icons of the East and auctioning their artworks at record prices. Beyond merely buying and selling art objects, Larasati believes in enhancing the appreciation and development of art in Asia, as well as providing emerging artists from Asia the opportunity to showcase their work on a global stage and raise their profile both in their home country and internationally.