First Christie's auction in China takes in $25 million

Sept. 27, 2013 at 8:48 AM

SHANGHAI, Sept. 27 (UPI) -- Christie's first auction in mainland China brought in $25 million, including $1.57 million for the sale of a Pablo Picasso painting, officials said.

The auction, which took place in Shanghai, drew nearly 1,000 bidders and clients Thursday and broke several records, a release from Christie's said.

It was the first time a Picasso had been sold at auction in mainland China, and it was the highest price -- $678,326 -- ever achieved for a painting by Singaporean artist Cheong Soo Pieng, the release said.

"Our first auction in Shanghai has illustrated how much demand and appreciation there is for art across categories. A red ruby necklace achieved the highest sales figure at [$3,405,285] and records were broken for Singaporean art," said François Curiel, President of Christie's Asia.

Christie's was the first foreign auction house to be granted permission to operate in mainland China, the official Chinese news agency Xinhua reported Friday.

More than two-thirds of the buyers at the auction were from mainland China and the rest came from elsewhere in Asia, the United States and Europe, the Christie's release said.

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