For $13 Million, David Bowie’s Elusive Art Collection Could Be Yours


David Bowie’s personal art collection will form a major three-part sale at Sotheby’s this November.The collection, which includes around 400 items, will travel the world prior to the sale, going on display in London, Los Angeles, New York and Hong Kong.

It will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for fans to see the work that influenced Bowie’s creative output.

Modern and contemporary British art forms the heart of the collection, with work by Henry Moore, Graham Sutherland, Frank Auerbach and Damien Hirst. It also includes outsider art, surrealism and contemporary African art

Bowie was heavily immersed in the world of art, and in 1994 was invited to join the academics-only board of Modern Painters magazine, where he interviewed artists such as Tracey Emin, Jeff Koons, and Damien Hirst. He also painted throughout his life, and was once quoted as saying, “Art was, seriously, the only thing I’d ever wanted to own…It can change the way I feel in the mornings.”

The Estate of David Bowie said that although his family will keep a number of pieces of personal significance, they feel others should have the chance “to appreciate – and acquire – the arts and objects he so admired.”

A selection of highlights from the collection will be on display in London from July 20-August 9 and again from November 1-10, before the auctions take place on November 10 and 11.

When David Bowie wasn’t busy making some of the most groundbreaking art of his generation, he was a fierce private collector of some of history’s most famous artwork, having owned more than 400 pieces. For the first time ever, the late icon’s personal collection will be revealed to the public; it will later go up for auction this fall. Starting November 1, Sotheby’s plans to display the entire collection at its New Bond Street galleries, in London, for ten days, after which all 400-plus items will go up for sale at a three-part auction, on November 10 and 11. Some of those items include works by British 20th-century artists Frank Auerbach, Damien Hirst, Henry Moore, and Graham Sutherland, and there are also works by Jean-Michel Basquiat, Marcel Duchamp, and Ettore Sottsass.

The whole collection is valued at $13.2 million, with Basquiat’s Air Power — which Bowie bought the year after playing Andy Warhol in 1996’s Basquiatexpected to be the biggest seller at $3–4 million. But if London art-collecting isn’t quite in your budget, Sotheby’s will also tour some of the highlights at early preview exhibits in Los Angeles, New York City, and Hong Kong through September and October.




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