David Bowie’s personal art collection sells for £33 million at London auction

The two-day auction concluded at Sotheby's last night (November 11), well exceeding price estimations

A two-day auction of David Bowie‘s personal art collection has made just under £33 million.

Over 400 works owned by Bowie, who died in January, were put forward for the auction at Sotheby’s, which began on Thursday night (November 10) at the London auction house. Art pieces by the likes of Frank Auerbach, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Damien Hirst were among the items put forward for auction. Bowie’s family have kept artworks from the late musician’s collection that they consider to be of “particular significance,” but the proceeds from the sales will return to his estate after sales and tax figures are deducted.

As The New York Times reports, auction estimates of much of the 356 works (thought to have made up about 65% of Bowie’s total collection) were exceeded by buyers, with £24.3 million being taken on the first day alone – more than twice that of Sotheby’s original estimation of between £8-£11 million.


The most expensive lot during Thursday’s opening session was Basquiat’s Air Power, which went for £7.1m. Auerbach’s Head of Gerda Boehm – of which Bowie once said “I want to sound like that looks”- fetched £3.8m alone.

Two further auctions took place yesterday (November 11), with the final sales total coming in at £32.9 million.

56 sales records were set by the conclusion of the auction last night, with over 1000 bidders participating online alone.

A record player designed as “a musical pet” by Bowie, meanwhile, sold for £257,000 last night. See the player below.


Last week, a Kickstarter campaign was set up to fund a tribute statue of Bowie in the town of Aylesbury, which is located just north of London. The late artist debuted ‘Hunky Dory’ and ‘Ziggy Stardust’ songs at the local Friars club, while he also referenced the area’s Market Square in the opening lines of ‘Five Years’.

The fund is hoping to raise £100,000 to cover the cost of the statue.