Part I of Christie’s April sales of Modern and Contemporary Arab, Iranian and Turkish Art was held this evening in Dubai and totaled $4,016,300/AED14,751,870 and was 91% sold by value. This was above the high estimate of $3.9 million. The highlight was Mahmoud Saïd’s Marsa Matrouh which sold for $602,500, double its estimate. In addition, a work by international contemporary artist, the Iraqi Ahmed Alsoudani, sold for $386,500. The last lot in the sale was a work created just yesterday in front of an audience by the Tunisian artist Nja Mahdaoui and four young Emiratis. It sold for $50,000 to benefit the Noor Dubai Foundation and under the patronage of H.E. The Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development. The sale continues tomorrow evening with part II and is sponsored by Zurich.
Michael Jeha, Managing Director of Christie’s Middle East and Head of Sale, said: “We are delighted with the sale this evening which had such a strong sold percentage and in which 4 new world auction records were set. With such an impressive group of artists represented in the part I sale combined with the emerging talent in part II, collectors have had a rare chance to see the past, present and future talent among the artists of the Middle East and Turkey. We look forward to the part II sale tomorrow evening.”
One of two works sold by the North Carolina Museum of Art, to benefit the Museum’s acquisition fund, by the Lebanese artist Saliba Douaihy 1915-1994 sold for $278,500, well above the $80,000-120,000 estimate and establishing a new world auction record for the artist.
After the success of the Edge of Arabia sale held this time last year in Dubai and Christie’s support for the group’s recent exhibition in Jeddah, the audience applauded when Abdulnasser Gharem’s b. 1973 In Transit V sold for $116,500, the second highest price for the artist at auction.
A portrait by the celebrated Turkish artist Azade Köker, b.1949, entitled And it was my life that was flowing slowly sold for $86,500 and a glamorous painting of Marilyn Monroe by Murat Pulat set a new record for the artist when it fetched $56,250.
Christie’s will continue to support Noor Dubai Foundation at their forthcoming Art 4 Sight charity auction to be held on 23 April at Ara Gallery in Dubai.