Outstanding results from Deutscher and Hackett’s latest timed online auction prove that collector enthusiasm and demand remain remarkably strong, despite ongoing COVID-19 related economic challenges. The single-owner sale, The Peter and Renate Nahum Collection of Aboriginal Art, London: Part II, featured 64 works of art - predominantly eucalyptus bark paintings from Maningrida, Yirrkala and Central and Western Arnhem Land. It followed the extremely successful July auction, which included a further 53 works from the Nahum Collection of Aboriginal Art, with 98% of these lots selling, 153% by value.

Hosted on Deutscher and Hackett’s online bidding platform on Wednesday August 19, The Peter and Renate Nahum Collection of Aboriginal Art, London: Part II totalled $154,943 (inc. buyer’s premium), with 107% of lots sold by value and over 90% sold by volume, highlighting the renewed interest in Australian Indigenous and bark paintings art among collectors.

Gloria Petyarre small.jpg

Bush Medicine, 1999
Est: $6,000 – 8,000
Sold for $13,500 (inc. BP) 

It presented the perfect opportunity for collectors to acquire lower value works by important Indigenous artists - some rarely seen on the secondary market. Local and international bidders competed, with several pieces surpassing their high estimate. Gloria Petyarre’s striking painting Bush Medicine, 1999 sold for $13,500 (inc. BP) against an estimate of $6,000 – 8,000 and Bronwyn Bancroft’s detailed canvas Gene Pool, 2002 sold for $7,977 against an estimate of $2,000 – 4,000.

Other highlights included:
Lot 12: A PAIR OF MIMIH SPIRITS, 2006 by MELBA GUNJARRWANGA, sold for over $4,200 against estimates of $800-1,200
Lot 18: A bark painting of WITITJ THE OLIVE PYTHON, 1970 by NADJU from Western Arnhem Land, sold for over $4,200 against estimates of $2,000-4,000
Lot 57: DJAMBU (SAMBO) BARRA BARRA, sold for $6,000 against estimates of $3,000-5,000

With recent Government Stage 4 COVID-19 restrictions in place in Melbourne, all works were sent for viewing at Deutscher and Hackett’s Sydney gallery. Interstate and overseas clients were able to request condition reports, high-res images, and see in situ shots of the artworks for scale, as well as chat to an art specialist over the phone or even via ZOOM.

This auction result, together with the robust prices from our auctions in March and July reinforce the sustained growth in market appeal for Australian indigenous art at all levels both locally and overseas. With restrictions on viewings, the strong results of the sale reflect growing confidence in online bidding and participation in online art auctions.