Photographer Andreas Gursky Unseats Cindy Sherman in Record Setting Sale

Andreas Gursky's Rhein II fetched an auction record of $4.3 million at Christie's New York.
Andreas Gursky's Rhein II fetched an auction record of $4.3 million at Christie's New York.
(Christie's)

A digital photograph entitled “Rhein II” by German photographer Andreas Gursky sold for $4.3 million last week at Christie’s New York, setting a new record for the artist and the category.

The realized price far exceeded expectations, which had been between $2.5 to $3.5 million, but competition at the auction was fierce.

Gursky's “99Cent II Diptychon” was the previous record holder for most expensive photograph sold before being dethroned by Cindy Sherman’s “Untitled # 96” at a Christie’s auction last May.

“Rhein II” was taken in the artist’s hometown of Dusseldorf, which lies at the center of the lower Rhine.  The large format photograph depicts a spartan stretch of the river that has had all extraneous factors edited out, leaving behind bands of grey and green.  It is part of a set of six abstract landscapes that the artist produced centered on the Rhine river.

While some feel the price paid was exorbitant, Francis Outred, head of the postwar and contemporary art at Christie’s European office says, "In my opinion, this price will come to be seen as extremely reasonable."

Writes Florence Waters in the Telegraph, "...it could be a long time before a photograph comes along that will top Gursky’s print. This image is a vibrant, beautiful and memorable – I should say unforgettable - contemporary twist on Germany’s famed genre and favourite theme: the romantic landscape, and man’s relationship with nature."

(Report: Christine Bolli for ARTFIXdaily)

More News Feed Headlines

Portrait of Anne Vallayer-Coster, by Alexander Roslin 1783.  Now part of the Crocker Art Museum collections.

Crocker Art Museum Acquires Portrait of 18th-c. French Artist Anne Vallayer-Coster

  • August 27, 2015 12:04

Among 400 new acquisitions last year to the Crocker Art Museum collections is a significant ...

Read More

Mark Rothko’s No.  6 (Violet, Green and Red)

Singapore Unfreezes Assets of Sued Art Dealer Yves Bouvier

  • August 25, 2015 22:48

In an August 21 order, the Singapore High Court  lifted a freeze on the assets of the Swiss "king ...

Read More

Still from footage of the boy breaking a Paolo Porpora floral still-life.  Via YouTube

Museum Mishaps: Kids Accidentally Break Baroque Painting, 2,000-Year-Old Vase in Separate Incidents

  • August 25, 2015 22:48

Two kids had their worst museum visits ever this week. A 12-year-old boy on a school field trip ...

Read More

250-lb.Red Ball on the loose.  Via Instagram user Jeremy 419

Giant Red Ball Rolls Away From Toledo Museum of Art Installation

  • August 24, 2015 22:00

A 15-foot-tall, 250-pound inflated ball, sponsored by the Toledo Museum of Art, broke free of ...

Read More

Related Press Releases

Related Events from ArtfixDaily Calendar

ArtfixDaily Artwire