Sotheby’s recently concluded its bi-annual Modern & Contemporary African Art auction, exceeding the lower end of its pre-sale estimate by over 40% to net £2.7 million ($3.7 million). Participants hailed from 34 countries, with over a third of buyers transacting with Sotheby’s for the first time, making the auction houses’ third online-only auction of contemporary African art a major success.

The category was created by Sotheby’s only four years ago to champion the work of African artists. Since then, it has achieved over 80 record-breaking sales, underscoring the rising global interest in this category. According to Sotheby’s estimates, on average around a third of bidders since the launch have originated from Africa, North America, and Europe, with 10% from LatAm and Asia. Yet around 70% of the sales between this period were African collectors.

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