Who logged on to Sotheby’s last night to watch or bid in the live auction of Anthony & Beverly Knight’s collection of early Papunya art?

Predictably there were a lot of great pieces. Items selling well over the estimate include Tommy McRae Returning from the Chase, George Tjangala Men and Women at Snake Ceremony, Timmy Payungka Tjapangati Ceremonial Dreaming Journey, Johnny Warangula Tjupurrula Wild Potato, the Charles Henry Kerry/Henry King Albums, John Kiparra Tjakamarra Corroboree Man Sitting in Cave, Uta Uta Tjangala Special Pintupi Travelling Ceremony and Queenie McKenzie Rainbow Snake over Texas Downs.

But some of the star performers of the night were the artefacts, a 76.4cm womera sold for almost double the estimate at $AUD22K, an Early and Exceptional Parrying Shield for $AUD55K (est. $15-20K), and a collection of artefacts from South East Australia sold for $AUD62K against an upper estimate of $20K.

Here are the prices of some paintings sold on the night:

  • Mick Namarari Tjapaltjarri CEREMONIAL MEDICINE STORY (1971) Price IBP: $AUD56,120
  • Johnny Warangula Tjupurrula WATER DREAMING AND LIGHTNING (1971) Price IBP: $AUD31,720
  • Kaapa Mbitjana Tjampitjinpa HONEY ANT TRAVELLING DREAMING (1971) Price IBP: $AUD18,300
  • Johnny Warangula Tjupurrula TRAVELLING WATER DREAMING WITH LIGHTNING (1971) Price IBP: $AUD61,000
  • Walter Tjampitjinpa WOMEN’S BIG CEREMONIAL DREAMING JOURNEY (1971) Price IBP: $AUD17,080
  • George Tjangala MEN AND WOMEN AT SNAKE CEREMONY (1971) Price IBP: $AUD34,160
  • Timmy Payungka Tjapangati CEREMONIAL DREAMING JOURNEY (1971) Price IBP: $AUD67,100
  • Tommy McRae RETURNING FROM THE CHASE 24X35CM (c 1890) $AUD65K
  • John Kiparra Tjakamarra CORROBOREE MAN SITTING IN CAVE (1971) Price IBP: $AUD91,500
  • Paddy Bedford THOOWOONGGOONARRIN 2006 Price IBP: $AUD183,000
  • Queenie McKenzie (Nakarra) Rainbow Snake Over Texas Downs Price IBP: $AUD29,280