Christie's Dubai Auction sets new records

Dubai, March 22 (IANS) Christies, one of the worlds leading players in the art business, set new records at its "Dubai March auctions of modern and contemporary Middle Eastern art and important watches," which fetched a whooping $13,437,688 dollars.

The Modern and Contemporary Middle Eastern Art sale held on the evening of March 17 concluded the Dubai Art Week, achieving a total of $8,079,375, setting new world auction records for 18 artists.

The artists included Marwan Sahmarani (Lebanese, b. 1970), Nazir Nabaa (Syrian, 1941-2016), Mahmoud Sabri (Iraqi, 1927-2012) and Koorosh Shishegaran (Iranian, b. 1945).

The Important Watches auction realized 5,358,313 dollars, the highest total for any watch auction in the Middle East and set a record for the most expensive watch sold at auction in the region.

The top lot of the sales were Mahmoud Saïd's Assouan -- "ile et dunes oil painting," accompanied by its preparatory oil sketch, selling for 685,500 dollars, three times higher than its pre-sale estimate.

For the watches the highest price of the evening was achieved for the Patek Philippe, manufactured in 1981, selling for just under 500,000 dollars.

It is the most expensive vintage watch sold at auction in the Middle East.

Michael Jeha, managing director Christie's Middle East, commented: "Christie's reinforced its position as market leader in the region for the 12th consecutive year. The demand for top quality art remains extremely strong and the buyer base for Middle Eastern art continues to deepen and internationalise. There was fierce bidding in the room for the most established artists, with 18 new auction records being set in the process". 

The Dubai auction attracted interest from collectors around the globe from 22 countries and the top lots from the picture sale were bought by clients from Lebanon, Canada, UAE and UK.