Christie’s Joins the Race for Millennial Buyers With Its Own Sale of Supreme Skateboards (Plus a Pinball Machine)
The sale 'Handbags X Hype' features artist-designed skate decks and Hermès bags.
In yet another sign that auction houses are branching out from traditional fine art categories to court younger buyers, Christie’s is staging the “Handbags X Hype” sale, offering a mashup of five-figure Hermès handbags, a Spalding basketball, a pinball machine, artist-designed Supreme skateboard decks, and more.
Among the custom decks in the online sale, which runs from November 26 to December 10, include those designed by George Condo, KAWS, Marilyn Minter, Takashi Murakami, and Richard Prince. The Supreme decks, as well as other objects from the streetwear brand, are expected to collectively realize $232,300 to $345,800.
“I’ve been wanting to do a sale like this for a while,” Caitlin Donovan, head of the Christie’s sale, told Artnet News. “At Christie’s, we’ve sold pieces of Supreme in prior handbags sales, but this marks a departure as it is the largest selection we have ever offered and curated for truly the ‘most supreme’ pieces by the brand.”
Christie’s appears to be taking a cue from Sotheby’s, which organized a sale of 278 Supreme skate decks earlier this year. The entire collection was snapped up by a lone bidder, a young Vancouver collector named Carson Guo, for $800,000 (the low end of the estimate).
Donovan worked with consignor Ibrahim Itani, founder of Canadian streetwear superstore Plus, as well as author Bryon Hawes, who has written books about streetwear and Supreme, to “hand-select each piece from Ibrahim’s extensive collection for this sale,” Donovan said.
Donovan noted that Christie’s online sales are “the number one driver of new buyers” at the auction house, last year accounting for 41 percent of new collectors. “We believe we will not only reach new audiences, but we are also importantly following the buying trends of what current collectors are buying,” she said.
Among the highlights are a Supreme Stern pinball machine, estimated at $30,000 to $50,000, a set of five Ryan McGiness Pantone skate decks, estimated at $10,000 to $15,000, a Spalding basketball estimated at $10,000 to $15,000, and a set of two KAWS skateboards, estimated at $7,000 to $9,000.
But the most expensive works in the sale are actually the Hermès bags. A rare matte white Himalaya “Niloticus” crocodile Birkin bag is estimated at $40,000 to $60,000.
See more items from the sale below.
Follow Artnet News on Facebook:
Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.