Kate Moss Sells as Collection Reaps $2.73 Million at Christie’s
A collection of artworks depicting the British model Kate Moss sold in London for 1.7 million pounds ($2.73 million), meeting estimates.
The 58 pieces by artists including Irving Penn, Mario Testino, Chuck Close and Annie Leibovitz were sold by the German photography collector Gert Elfering at Christie’s International late yesterday. Once a photographer himself, Elfering founded the Camerawork Gallery in Berlin.
“Kate is the ultimate modern muse and we will be seeing her images in major museums and private collections for years to come,” Elfering said in a statement before the sale.
The sale attracted a crowd of about 100. It was the first auction of a new season of contemporary art market events in the U.K. capital that culminates next month with the Frieze fair.
The auction was the fifth time that Christie’s has sold selections of photographs from Elfering’s collection, which concentrates on postwar fashion. The total, including fees, was in line with the pre-sale estimate of 1.5 million pounds, based on hammer prices.
Moss, 39, is one of the world’s most prominent fashion models, appearing frequently in Vogue and other luxury fashion magazines, as well as being the face of several high-profile advertising campaigns.
The veteran U.K. pop artist Allen Jones, best known for his 1969 suite of mannequin fetish furniture, produced a specially commissioned painting and sculpture of Moss for Christie’s auction.
The life-size glass-reinforced composite sculpture “A Model Model,” the first from an edition that will not exceed six, according to Christie’s, sold for 133,875 pounds, the top price of the auction. Jones’s unique 2013 painting, “Kate in Red,” raised 121,875 pounds. Both works were acquired by the same commission bidder for hammer prices that were below the pre-sale estimates.
An Internet bidder paid a further 32,500 pounds for Jones’s 2013 dye-destruction print, “Kate Moss (Bronze Glitter),” estimated at between 20,000 pounds and 30,000 pounds.
The most expensive of the fashion photographs was a 1998 print of Irving Penn’s “Kate Moss (hand on thigh),” a black-and-white nude study taken in New York for the September 1996 issue of Vogue. Numbered four from an edition of 11, it sold for 61,875 pounds.
Sante D’Orazio’s black-and-white “Kate Moss on Lounge Chair I, Glen Cove, NY,” taken for the December 1995 edition of Italian Vogue, fell to a telephone bidder at 40,000 pounds. Most of the more attractive photographic images sold for hammer prices of between 20,000 pounds and 30,000 pounds.
“Kate,” a 2007 black-and white Jacquard tapestry by the U.S. artist Chuck Close, was the most highly valued of 10 works that failed to sell. From an edition of 10, it had been priced at 60,000 pounds to 80,000 pounds.
Muse highlights include Jason Harper on cars and Lance Esplund on art.
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