Auction house Doyle New York held its Inaugural Street Art Auction on October 16, 2012, the first of its kind in the US, according to their website
. The landmark sale showcased many of the most important artists in the history of Street Art and Graffiti, spanning the early 1980s to the present day. Competitive bidding from the salesroom, the telephones and the Internet netted sales of $129,179.
Running across 49 lots, the auction featured ‘pretty much everyone,’ reported Marina Galperina for the New York centric site Animal
, including Banksy, COPE2, Faile, FUTURA, Dalek, D*FACE, Shepard Fairey, and Anthony Lister. Galperina noted that Phillips de Pury and other auction houses have had consistent success selling street art alongside more traditional fare, but this was a first for the US in being an all-street art/graffiti auction.
Hrag Vartanian interviewed Doyle New York’s Specialist in Street Art, Angelo Madrigale, for Hyperallergic
‘I think it’s been a long time coming.’ Madrigale said. ‘I was very excited at the opportunity of introducing the Street Art auction category at Doyle New York, because a project like this was not only a possibility here, it is something the entire company is excited about.’
‘It’s no secret there have been wildly successful Street Art auctions in Europe over the last few years. Nothing like this has really been tried at the auction house level here in the US, and we’re all enthusiastic about introducing it here at Doyle New York.’
Doyle New York reported that a classic work by the late Margaret Kilgallen (1967-2001) achieved a world record for the artist tripling Kilgallen's prior record of $9,560, which was set only last year.
Also featured in the auction was a decoupaged Vespa scooter by Shepard Fairey (b. 1970) that more than doubled its estimate of $4,000-6,000 to fetch $12,500 from a New York buyer. Fairey is most well known for his Barack Obama "Hope" poster, which now hangs in the National Portrait Gallery.
Graffiti news site 12ozProphet
reported that the auction was preceded by a panel discussion in September which included Cost, Buff Monster, Hrag Vartanian of Hyperallergic
, and David Meade. The panelists discussed, among other topics, the transition of street art into major galleries and museums as well as the globalisation of the movement.
Other artists setting records for their sales were San Francisco native and Kilgallen’s husband Barry McGee (b. 1966), Duster, Cody Hudson, David Choe, Todd James, Lamour Supreme & Mishka, and ASVP.