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In Brief | AUCTIONS

Warhol helps sales surge for Christie's

July 14, 2007|From Times Wire Reports

Christie's International, the world's largest art seller, said auctions rose almost 30% on premium prices for works by Andy Warhol and an influx of new buyers.

London-based Christie's sold 1.52 billion pounds ($3.09 billion) of art and collectibles in the first half of 2007, compared with 1.17 billion pounds a year earlier Contemporary auctions more than doubled to 459 million pounds, including Warhol's "Green Car Crash," which sold for $71.7 million in New York.

"The most blistering growth is reserved for contemporary art and the king is Warhol," said Marc Porter, president of Christie's Americas division. "In every time of great wealth creation -- whether from railroads or hedge funds -- there is one field that captures most of the market interest."

Christie's and Sotheby's, the No. 2 auction house, are riding a 10-year boom in contemporary art prices and an expansion of sales in Russia, Asia and the Middle East.

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