With a total turnover of 34,887,000 euros, 62 percent sold and about 205 percent increase on the estimated lots sold, Cambi Auction House closes 2023 with great satisfaction, consolidating the appreciation and consideration in the market for the maison, whose departments-from Milan to Genoa, from Antique Art to 20th-century art to luxury goods-have all demonstrated high quality research.
The department that in terms of turnover achieved the best result in 2023 was , with 6.4 million, the Design department,followed by Old Paintings and Drawings,which had a turnover of 4.1 million; in third place was the Modern and Contemporary Art department with 4 million,followed by Jewelry,which reached 3.5 million. Excellent performances were also achieved by the departments of Antiques, Numismatics and Wrist and Pocket Watches, which closed 2023 with turnovers of about 3 million.
Foreign sales also grew, with 31 percent of lots sold outside Italyand 41 percent sold by value. Foreign countries with the largest number of buyers include the United States of America, France, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, and China.
Throughout the year, Cambi has set new records in exciting auctions that kept everyone on their toes; among them, the top three top lots are: the figure of Lama Tzongkhapa seated on a gilded bronze lotus flower, made in Tibet in the late 17th and early 18th centuries, which went for 352. 100 euros; the exceptional Cosmograph Daytona ref 6263 in 18k yellow gold with a black dial, champagne counters, black acrylic bezel, and riveted bracelet, which fetched 206,350 euros; and, finally, an extraordinary painting, Antonio Ligabue’s Lion with Zebra (1954), an oil on faesite depicting the animal in the act of pouncing on its prey, which fetched 175,100 euros.
“In general, after strong growth in the post-pandemic years at the European and world level, we note a moment of slight market downturn that became evident in the second half of the year,” comments Matteo Cambi, president of the maison. “The Italian market is in good health while demand from abroad is more cautious.
Design maintains its supremacy in terms of sales, but this year we have noticed a revaluation of antique art and furniture with interesting results both for the Department of Old Paintings and Drawings, with excellent adjudications for Italian and Flemish painters of the 17th century, and for that of Antiques where we set a record for a rare teapot by Vezzi from 1725.”
Cambi also records good results in the Luxury sector, in which Jewels and Watches stand out, among which, alongside established and historical brands, some more niche independent brands also emerge, while numismatics, whose department is now one of the maison’s leading ones, confirms a particularly happy moment with strong national and international collecting.
“The international political landscape and the resulting economic uncertainties mean that the demand for safe haven goods is extremely high, and this leads to sometimes striking results – continues Matteo Cambi-. My prediction is that during the coming year the trend will remain the same, at least as far as the first part of the year is concerned. As for artists on the rise, we have noticed that there is a lot of interest in what is in demand on the international market today: special pieces, historical artists with an international character. On the upswing is the Asian market for Oriental art, in fact our top lot of the year was really a Chinese bronze sculpture from the 18th century.”
Of course, the Italian collectors looking for quality and particularity remain strong, showing interest in historical authors from the early 20th century, such as Fortunato Depero and Medardo Rosso, but also from the 1950s and 1960s such as Ligabue, Sergio Lombardo or Giuseppe Santomaso. However, the author who has had a record-breaking increase this year is Salvo, although, as Matteo Cambi reiterates, “it seems more like a market operation destined to deflate than true artistic revaluation.”
For 2024 Cambi announces a rich calendar partially visible at www.cambiaste.com with a series of appointments of sure interest.
In January, several auction times dedicated to modern production and ancient art will alternate, while in February and March the first major live events will return with Antique Books and 19th-century Painting in Genoa, and Fine Jewels and Design 200 in Milan, continuing in the spring with events dedicated to modern art, ancient art and Luxury.