Bonhams on a budget

Bonhams will provide art collectors in Hong Kong with an opportunity in November to acquire prints by well-known artists that won’t break the bank.
Damien Hirst's Mickey
Damien Hirst's Mickey

Bonhams is to pioneer a print, photography and work-on-paper auction, introducing a different media to Hong Kong’s art scene.

Bonhams will this month to provide art collectors in Hong Kong of with a unique opportunity to acquire works by well-known artists that won’t break the bank.

The Prints, Photography and Works on Paper auction on November 14 starts at 4 pm at One Pacific Place, Room 2001. A free preview kicks off of November 6.

Among the 101 stunning pieces that are set to go under the hammer are works by internationally renowned artists such as Andy Warhol, Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, Sol Lewitt, Marc Quinn, Nobuyoshi Araki, Yayoi Kusama, Yoshitomo Nara, Ho Fan, and Ma Desheng.

Nobuyoshi Araki's Painted Flower

“The sale, first stand-alone show devoted to prints, photos and works on paper in Hong Kong, encourages new collectors to discover the joys of collecting at reasonable prices and will further underscore the importance of each of these media as worthy of attention in their own right,” said specialist and head of sales at Bonhams, Charlotte Nunn.

Working closely with the auction house’s director of Asia for fine arts Magnus Renfrew, she said Bonhams planned to specialise in this area with two annual sales in future.

“There had been little access to, or awareness of, such media in Asia and we aim to highlight that it is possible to buy a limited edition print by an artist like Damien Hirst for only HK$55,000 ($7,096),” Nunn said. “We wanted to offer something for everyone at the right price point, ranging from HK$8,000 to HK$900,000, that appeals to those wishing to collect Western art as well as Asian works.”

For those unfamiliar with the myriad processes of printmaking, Bonhams’s classy catalogue provides a detailed glossary outlining how they are created.

Nunn said that although some might feel that the duplication of an image may dilute its value, prints and photographs normally have limited, numbered editions that are carefully controlled and of impeccable provenance.  Her three years as the manager of Other Criteria, Damien Hirst’s publishing company, gave her first-hand experience in the field.

“The Damien Hirst print Mickey was first offered at £4,500 ($6,964) but is now selling for many thousands [more] in the after-market,” she said. “Artists working with prints and photos understand the art market.”

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