Weyant, 27, is represented by mega-dealer Larry Gagosian, who she is dating. Evoking the psychological complexity of being a young woman in the 21st century with the technical precision of a 17th century old master, Weyant’s paintings are on the wish list of many collectors.
(Christie’s example sold for $1.5 million to an Asian bidder last week. Phillips’ Weyant, a painstaking still life titled “Buffet II,” dating from 2021, cost $731,000. It was valued at $100,000-$150,000. .)
Experts say the current huge discrepancies between prices in the “primary market” in galleries and resale in the “secondary market” for works by in-demand artists have been fueled by a global influx of wealthy young collectors, particularly in Asia, who are expanding the careers of artists. up-and-coming names on Instagram but who have no way of getting to the front of dealer waiting lists. Bidding at a public auction gives them access to the names they want, even if it means paying irrational prices to outsiders.
“There’s a new generation of collectors who can’t afford a $50 million Picasso, but can spend $5 million on a young artist they think will stand the test of time,” said Wendy Cromwell, a New York City researcher. established art consultant. Cromwell added that she had purchased Weyant paintings from other galleries for less than $30,000, before the artist’s representation with Blum & Poe.
Since social media is the echo chamber, potential auction buyers tend to pursue the same names of the moment. Phillips, like Christie’s and Sotheby’s, also featured hard-to-find works by Shara Hughes, Matthew Wong, and María Berrío. A quintessentially dreamy landscape by Hughes from 2017, “The Not Dark Dark Spots” cost $1.6 million after seven minutes of competition. It had carried a low estimate of $300,000. A lavish, large-scale collage by Berrío, a New York-based Colombian artist, rose to $998,000. A vision of turn-of-the-century women reclining in an interior full of flowers and rabbits, “Burrows of the Yellow,” dates back to 2013 and had a low estimate of $400,000.
One newcomer to keep an eye out for was Brooklyn-based female figurative painter Robin F. Williams, who has 108,000 Instagram followers but whose works have so far not sold for more than $40,000 at auction.