Following the announcement of the setting up Sotheby’s Beijing, China had their first art auction in its history. Kevin Ching, the chief executive of Sotheby’s Asia said that China has provided the company with tremendous growth in the last 5 years and the joint-venture business will see the world’s largest antique and art auctioneer working with a local partner to further establish their presence in Asia. Sotheby’s operated through its Hong Kong branch prior to the setting up of the Beijing office.
At the moment, Sotheby’s is still not allowed to sell antiques but the art auction garnered quite an overwhelming response from the regional and local art collectors. After all, China has become the largest art collecting nation in the world. In fact, the top 2 places in Artprice’s global ranking by artists by auction revenue is held by renowned Chinese artists Zhang Daqian and Qi Baishi ahead of old master greats like Pablo Picasso and even Andy Warhol.