LiveAuctioneers Annual Report cites positive environmental impact of recirculated antiques, collecting trends, record growth in 2020

  • NEW YORK CITY, New York
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  • February 01, 2021

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Tiffany Studios table lamp with ‘Lotus’ shade. Sold by Clarke Auction through LiveAuctioneers for $150,000

NEW YORK – In its 2020 Annual Report, LiveAuctioneers reveals a year-over-year pattern of growth that is unrivaled in the industry, confirming 1.2 million items sold through the site and, on average, 120,000 new-bidder sign-ups each month.


“For many reasons, 2020 was a pivotal year. Despite the unprecedented challenges, we saw astounding growth as auctions moved almost exclusively online. We welcomed millions of new buyers seeking a more sustainable way to shop, and at a time when supporting small businesses was more important than ever, we were able to help auction houses achieve record-setting sales and 102% year-over-year growth in first-time buyers,” said LiveAuctioneers Senior Director of Marketing Suzie Ryu. “Buyers accustomed to bidding in person encountered a dramatically improved auction experience, with unparalleled access to thousands of auctions through LiveAuctioneers’ website and five-star-rated iOS and Android apps. Thanks to features like sophisticated search and filtering tools, bidder ratings and reviews, personalized alerts, seamless checkout, and capability to bid in multiple auctions at once, previous in-person bidders are enjoying the thrill of the hunt without any of the limitations of bidding in person. We are very excited to build on the momentum in 2021 and continue to deliver an exceptional online auction experience to buyers and auction houses around the world.”


LiveAuctioneers’ newly released 2020 Annual Report reveals the types of items consumers are currently buying, which brands they love, and which art and collectibles categories achieved the highest prices over the last 12 months on LiveAuctioneers.

Josef Frank (Austrian/Swedish, 1885-1967), ‘Flora’ printed paper and mahogany cabinet, designed in 1937. Sold by Stair through LiveAuctioneers for $57,600


Antiques, the original recyclables, attract top designers to LiveAuctioneers


It has long been said that antiques were the original recyclables. In 2020, more than ever before, acquiring and reusing high-quality, well-made vintage objects became a fashionable – and responsible – thing to do. In media interviews, renowned designers, tastemakers, and style influencers spoke of their fondness for shopping at LiveAuctioneers and discovering classic pieces that are ready for their next life. These figures show how the environment benefited in 2020 from the recycling of antiques and vintage goods on LiveAuctioneers:


  • 68 tons of paper saved through online bidding
  • 455,000 tons of CO2 equivalent in recirculated gold sold on LiveAuctioneers
  • 11,000 tons of CO2 emissions reduced by remote bidding vs. driving to art auctions
  • 8X longer lifespan of furniture and home decor items sourced on LiveAuctioneers


Art-market stalwarts and mid-century modern style dominated 2020 purchases


Of the 1.2 million items acquired through LiveAuctioneers in 2020, the top categories of interest included contemporary art, automobilia, musical instruments, comic books, scientific objects, and wine and spirits. Favorite artists of 2020 were Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Marc Chagall, Keith Haring, and Banksy. The most-saved artworks were Joan Miro’s 1955 lithograph The Sun Eater, a Guy Carleton Wiggins Manhattan snowscape, and a Henk Van Putten marble sculpture titled Le Modernist.


As they searched, bid and bought, LiveAuctioneers bidders most often explored the Art Deco, mid-century and Victorian periods, as well as Chippendale and Louis XV styles. Furniture buyers overwhelmingly favored the mid-century modern look, especially as interpreted by such revered designers as George Nakashima, Hans Wegner, Finn Juhl, George Nelson and Milo Baughman. The most-saved furniture pieces of 2020 were a Michel Ducaroy five-piece “Togo” sectional sofa, a set of six Edward Wormley for Dunbar caned dining chairs, and a Gio Ponti Italian mid-century modern sofa.

Hermès shiny black Porosus crocodile, 10.70ctw diamond and white gold Birkin 35 handbag. Sold by Christie’s through LiveAuctioneers for $287,500


Luxury goods continued their spectacular run in the marketplace, led by Rolex, Cartier, Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Hermès. The most-saved luxury items of 2020 included a Louis Vuitton monogram “Keepall 50” travel bag, an Hermès “Evelyne” blue leather shoulder bag, and a group lot consisting of two Tiffany & Co., flap bags and a pair of gloves. In the Fine Jewelry category, the three most-saved items were a Cartier 7.55ct diamond and platinum ring, a Schlumberger for Tiffany “Bird on a Rock” diamond and beryl brooch; and a Rolex 1680 Red Submariner diver’s wristwatch.


Supporting the theory that there’s a buyer for anything and everything, 2020’s most-saved collectibles on LiveAuctioneers were: a 1967 Fender Jaguar guitar, a signed Lazaro figural octopus for tabletop display, and an early 20th-century Ouija board that purportedly belonged to a witch.


Click to view LiveAuctioneers’ Annual Report containing additional information about the company’s continued growth plus auction highlights of the past year.

Catherine Saunders-Watson
220 12th Avenue
New York City, New York

Founded in 2002, LiveAuctioneers delivers cutting-edge technology, award-winning client support and industry-acclaimed digital marketing services to more than 5,000 auction houses and galleries from 69 countries. The leading online destination for one-of-a-kind treasures, LiveAuctioneers provides a seamless search, bidding and purchasing experience across the web and via iOS/Android apps, using the latest technologies to connect millions of global online shoppers and savvy collectors with the world's most trusted auction houses. Always seeking to create enduring value for buyers and auction houses alike, LiveAuctioneers continues to lead the industry with the first mobile-bidding apps, live-streaming video capabilities, online payments with anti-fraud guarantees, free consignment-sourcing solutions for auctioneers, and a free price-results database for the arts and collectibles market. To learn more, visit

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