Top 10 Biggest Photography Auction Sales of 2014
A list of the ten most valuable photographs sold at auction around the world in 2014.
10) Sans Titre (2006) by Andreas Gursky
One of Andreas Gursky's typically large-scale works, 'Sans Titre' features an apparently endless display of glass perfume bottles, described as "a dizzying metaphor for seduction reduced to the status of consumer goods". It sold at Sotheby's in November for $510,053. - - - - - -
9) Winter Sunrise, Sierra Nevada from Lone Pine, California, 1941 by Ansel Adams
This landscape by the celebrated American photographer Ansel Adams was commissioned by the Department of the Interior, who contracted Adams to photographs National Parks and create murals for its new offices. It sold at Christie's in April for $545,000. - - - - - -
8) Vortograph (1917) by Alvin Langdon Coburn
'Vortographs' were perhaps the earliest form of abstract photography, inspired by Cubism and created using a series of mirrors. This example by Alvin Langdon Coburn sold at Sotheby's in April for $605,000. - - - - - -
7) The Music Lesson (1999) by Hiroshi Sugimoto
This photograph is part of Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto's 'Portraits' series, in which he uses wax figures and stylised lighting to recreate 16th century painted portraiture. This example, The Music Lesson, sold at Phillips in April for $629,000. - - - - - -
6) Gloria Swanson (1924) by Edward Steichen
During the early 20th century Edward Steichen revolutionised the field of fashion photography, and this portrait of the silent movie star Gloria Swanson is today regarded as an "iconic masterpiece". It sold at Sotheby's in April for $629,000. - - - - - -
5) (Nude) Charis, Santa Monica (1936) by Edward Weston
This famous nude study features Weston's muse and assistant Charis Wilson, whom he later married in 1937. Described as "one of the icons of 20th century photography" and printed directly from Weston's own negative, this photograph sold at Sotheby's in December for $653,000. - - - - - -
4) Photogram with Pinwheel and Other Shapes (1929) by László Moholy-Nagy
This image is essentially a photograph made without a camera. 'Photograms' are created by placing objects directly onto light-sensitive material, and then exposing that material to light to leave an unique imprinted image. This example by the Hungarian artist László Moholy-Nagy sold at Sotheby's in December for $773,000. - - - - - -
3) Shells (1927) by Edward Weston
Edwards Weston's striking still-life images of shells are amongst the most iconic and influential photographs of all time. This example, taken 1927, sold at Sotheby's in April for $905,000. - - - - - -
2) Evening, New York from the Shelton (1931) by Alfred Stieglitz
This view of mid-town Manhattan was taken by Stieglitz from the window of his apartment in the Shelton Hotel, as part of a series he continued into the 1930s. It sold at Sotheby's in December for $929,000. - - - - - -
1) Shadows and Reflections, Venice (1905) by Alvin Langdon Coburn
This impressionistic view of Venice by Alvin Langdon Coburn was one of the most reproduced images in the history of early art photography. It sold at Sotheby's in December for a record $965,000. - - - - - -
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