It's a great time to be selling contemporary paintings

The Scottish Contemporary Art Auction on Sunday 16 August achieved numerous record prices, a huge sale total, a higher than usual sell percentage and the highest number or registered bidders for this auction category in more than a decade. This sale followed our 5 July post shutdown contemporary sale which itself achieved the best auction total in more than six years. 
"When the UK economy is bad, the demand and selling prices for contemporary paintings by the best known artists rise sharply." Odd, but undeniably true. 
Lot 506. Estimate £5000 - 8000. Sold for £9500
Held in front of a socially distancing live audience at our galleries in Glasgow, the John Bellany (lot 506) sold to a collector who fought off strong bidding from numerous collectors from London, Edinburgh and around the UK. Estimated at £5000 - 8000 the hammer dropped at £9500. Despite strong local bidding, "Topping Out Day" a quintessentially "Glasgow picture" was eventually won by a Florida (USA) private collector at a new auction world record price (£8000) for artist Avril Paton.
 Lot 591. Estimate £6000 - 8000. Sold for £8000
The international breadth of our buyer audience was further highlighted when the small Norman Cornish mixed media sketch which received feverish bidding from the artist's homeland (North of England) and greatly exceeded the £2500 - 3500 estimate as it sold to a private collector in the United Arab Emirates for a mighty £8,800. 
 Lot 668. Estimate £2500 - 3500. Sold for £8800
 Lot 572.  Estimate £3000 - 6000. Sold for £6000
Other outstanding prices included: Alexander Goudie (£6000), three small Jolomo paintings (£1800, £1900 & £2000), numerous small works by Peter Howson, David Body (£700 & £700), Peter Goodfellow (£1900) and a new world record price for a Hannah Frank signed lithograph of £600. 
Lot 505. Estimate £1000 - 1500. Sold for £1900
 Lot 561. Estimate £1500 - 2500. Sold for £2000

 Lot 562. Estimate £1200 - 1800. Sold for £1800.
Glasgow has a long tradition as Scotland's "art capital" and for well over a century local Glasgow collectors have ignited and sustained the careers of the "contemporary" artists of each generation, many trained at, or associated with, the world renowned Glasgow School of Art. 
Lot 532. Estimate £400 - 600. Sold for £700.
Lot 533. Estimate £400 - 600. Sold for £700
 Lot 539. Estimate £200 - 400. Sold for £600
Our Specialist team report record  high buyer demand across the board, but in particular, anything by Peter Howson, John Bellany or John Lowrie Morrison (Jolomo) can currently be expected to achieve significantly higher prices than prior to the pandemic or at anytime in recent years. In every sense, it's currently a sellers market and yet ironically some sellers haven't yet realised it.
If you are considering the sale of good quality contemporary pictures, please be encouraged to contact our team at or by phoning 0141 810 2880. We are currently welcoming entries for the next Scottish Contemporary Art Auction on 27 September. 

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