Female Artists With African Backgrounds Are Winners at Phillips Auction in London
Art Business

Female Artists With African Backgrounds Are Winners at Phillips Auction in London

Phillips LONDON — Works by female artists with African origins created the highest-energy moments in Phillips’s summer sale in London Thursday, the last of the evening auctions that are the traditional finale of the contemporary art market’s hectic seasonal cycle. The British-Ghanaian painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye and the more established South African painter Marlene Dumas both had paintings sell for about twice their estimates to telephone bidders. “There’s been a correction. Buyers are looking to discover something new,” Cheyenne Westphal, chairwoman of Phillips, said, referring to how price growth for some established male artists, particularly abstract painters, has stalled. “There’s a return to figuration, and the artists are very diverse,” she added. “A global audience responds to that.” Four bidders pushed Ms. Yiadom-Boakye’s “Leave A Brick Under The Maple” (2015) a life-size portrait of a standing man, to 795,000 pounds, or about $1 million, almost double its high estimate. Institutional validation always gives confidence to bidders, and Ms. Yiadom-Boakye, who will have a retrospective at Tate Britain next May, also features in the much-praised Ghana pavilion at the Venice Biennale. Ms. Dumas’s haunting 1988 canvas, “Losing (Her Meaning)” depicting a nude woman facedown in a pool, has been included in […]

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