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Webb’s Art Auction Raises Over 1.4 Million Immediately After Lockdown

Lot 34. Tony Fomison. Watcher on the Shore. Estimate: $150,000 - $250,000. Price realised inc BP: $470,000.

An auction of fine art held at New Zealand’s most established auction house this evening, generated in excess of 1.4 million dollars in sales. The highest price was achieved by Tony Fomison’s seminal painting, Watcher on the Shore (1982-83) which hit $480,500, just shy of half a million. Paintings by Collin McCahon, Michael Smither and Bill Hammond also sold for significant figures.

The sale follows the recent spending trends which have seen New Zealanders investing vast sums in cultural assets. In August, this year Webb’s held a Wine auction which grossed over half a million dollars continuing the momentum of the July auction of collectable cars, which grossed over 600k. This sale included a 1973 Porsche 911T which achieved 180k, smashing pre auction estimates.

As we look towards the spectre of negative interest rates, Webb’s continues to offer alternative opportunities for long term investment. Investors are putting their money into assets, not to live in, but to live with, hang on their wall, park in their garage, and enjoy where their eyes can see them. In 2020, with less opportunity to travel, high net worth New Zealanders are spending their money at home and investing back into New Zealand businesses.

Head of Art, Charles Ninow said “The sale Included paintings by many of New Zealand’s most loved artists. It was a pleasure to handle these works and play a part in their enduring history.”

To view the full catalogue and results, visit:

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