The Affordable Art Auction by ArtHouse Contemporary Limited, which held on the 3rd of March, 2018 turned out to be an opportunity to pick up valuable artworks at reasonable prices. With 111 lots and bids starting from as low as N55,000.00 (fifty-five thousand naira), the chance of getting a good deal was high for the about 100 people that were in the auction room—especially as some had just come to observe and not buy. To the joy of the buyers, the hammer went down on piece after piece at bargain prices you would not get elsewhere. At the prices the hammer went down on these three lots, they seem the best steals from the auction.
Lot 94, Bare Essentials, Alex Nwokolo, 2005, N320,000.00
Alex Nwokolo is a celebrated painter from the Auchi School of Art, whose auction presence has grown steadily over the years. In 2014, his work, Dominion, (2014) was in the top 10 lots of the Terra Kulture Mydrim Gallery auction. In 2015, he was one of the top 10 artists at the Bonhams, Africa Now. And last year, The Nigeria Art Market Report listed him among the top fifty Nigerian artists by turnover at African Art Auctions.
Lot 98, Shine in Womanhood, Tola Wewe, 2012, N600,000.00
Surprisingly, this work by Tola Wewe, a founding member of the Ona movement, was sold last year for over a million naira. So it is a major steal at six hundred thousand naira. The Nigeria Art Market Report has consistently listed Tola Wewe among the top 50 artists by turnover since 2013.
Lot 86, Auchi-Iyekahi Landscape, Sam Ovraiti, 1993, N120,000
Arguably the most expressive water colourist in Nigeria, Sam Ovraiti is also from the Auchi School of Art like Alex Nwokolo. In 2014, his work, The Eve, was sold at the Bonhams ‘Africa Now’ Auction for $10,122. That year, he was among the top 20 artists’ by turnover according to the Nigeria Art Market Report 2014.