What’s Driving the Explosive Market Rise for Aboudia’s Vibrant Works

This past May (2021), at a Sotheby’s online sale, bidders around the world all wanted the same painting: Untitled (2015), a technicolor canvas by Ivorian artist Aboudia Abdoulaye Diarrassouba, better known simply as Aboudia. This fierce competition drove the work’s final sale price to £163,800 ($231,355), over eight times its estimate and breaking Aboudia’s previous auction record which was set just two months before, at Christie’s London. There, another painting, Untitled (2013), sold for £162,500 ($222,938).
That auction immediately followed Christie’s first single-artist online sale dedicated to Aboudia, titled “Noutchy in New York City,” which featured 22 works all created in the past year during lockdown from his studio in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. All 22 lots sold, with two works—La renaissance du Christ and Noutchy dans la rue (both 2020)—selling for $187,500 each, more than 10 times their high estimates.
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June 18, 2021