Two landscapes by Lucian Freud previously in the collection of British businessman and philanthropist Simon Sainsbury will be offered next month at Christie’s in London, the auction house announced Friday.
Separately, Sotheby’s released additional highlights of its upcoming Masters Week in New York, including an over 400-year-old Anthony Van Dyke painting, A Sketch for Saint Jerome, that was found in a farm shed in the late 20th century in New York. The auction house expects to bring in more than US$100 million from across nine sales running now until early February.
Christie’s sale of the two Freud landscapes will take place on the evening of Feb. 28 in London. Offered by the same private collector, both paintings were formerly in the collection of Sainsbury, whose family founded Sainsbury’s, the second largest chain of supermarkets in the U.K. Upon his death in 2006 at the age of 76, Sainsbury bequeathed the majority of his art collection, estimated to be worth £100 million at the time, to the National Gallery and the Tate Gallery in London.
One of the paintings, Scillonian Beachscape from 1945-46, will make its first public appearance on the market since 1974 and has a presale estimate of between £3.5 million and £5.5 million (US$4.3 million and US$6.8 million). Depicting a dreamlike coastal scene in lush, sun-drenched color, it was inspired by Freud’s visit to the Isles of Scilly and directly based on his drawing, Untitled, which sold for £138,600 at Christie’s in London last October.
The other, Garden from the Window, depicts the artist’s garden at 138 Kensington Church Street. It was first unveiled at the Tate in London in 2002, and its debut auction at Christie’s is expected to fetch £2.5 million and £3.5 million.
“Lucian Freud, revered as one of the greatest painters of the 20th century, continually returned to the natural world as a source of rich inspiration throughout his career. This lifelong fascination is perfectly encapsulated in these two exquisite paintings which offer viewers insight into both his early and late life,” Tessa Lord, acting head of department of Post-War and contemporary art at Christie’s London, said in a news release.
The National Gallery in London has recently organized a centenary retrospective “Lucian Freud: New Perspectives,” which will move to Thyssen-Bornemisza Museo Nacional in Madrid in February.
Freud’s auction record was set by his painting large interior w11 (after watteau), 1981-83, from the collection of Paul Allen. It sold for US$86.3 million last November at Christie’s in New York.
Meanshile, t Sotheby’s, its first major sale of the year will be its Masters Week in New York, which is expected to bring in more than US$100 million across nine sales that will run through early February.
The sales will be led by 10 Baroque masterpieces from the collection of Mark Fisch, a real estate developer and a trustee of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and his ex-wife, Rachel Davidson, a former New Jersey judge. The two filed for divorce last year. Highlighting the collection, to be auctioned next Thursday, is a 1609 Rubens masterpiece, Salome Presented with The Severed Head of Saint John the Baptist, with an estimate of between US$25 million and US$35 million.
The sales also include The One, a new format sale featuring one-of-a-kind objects throughout history. This sale will be led by Kobe Bryant’s Lakers jersey with a high estimate of US$7 million, and a Princess Diana’s dress, with a presale estimate between US$80,000 and US$120,000.
A Sketch for Saint Jerome from 1615-18 by Anthony Van Dyck that was discovered in the late 20th century in a farm shed in Kinderhook, N.Y., will be offered in the region of US$2 million and US$3 million. A portion of proceeds from the sale will benefit the Albert B. Roberts Foundation, which supports artists and other creatives.
Roberts, a collector of “lost” pieces, purchased the sketch for US$600. Soon afterwards, the sketch was recognized by art historian Susan J. Barnes as a “surprisingly well preserved” autograph work by Van Dyck, according to Sotheby’s.
He died in August 2021 at the age of 89.
Americans now think they need at least $1.25 million for retirement, a 20% increase from a year ago, according to a survey by Northwestern Mutual
While most U.S. workers are putting in fewer hours, men in the top 10% of earners cut back their time on the job the most, according to a new study
American workers have cut the number of hours they spend in their jobs since 2019, but no group has dialled back its time on the clock more than young, high-earning men whose jobs typically demand long hours.
The top-earning 10% of men in the U.S. labor market logged 77 fewer work hours in 2022, on average, than those in the same earnings group in 2019, according to a new study of federal data by the economics department at Washington University in St. Louis. That translates to 1.5 hours less time on the job each workweek, or a 3% reduction in hours. Over the same three-year period, the top-earning 10% of women cut back time at work by 29 hours, which translates to about half an hour less work each week, or a 1% reduction.
High-earning men in the 25-to-39 age range who could be described as “workaholics” were pulling back, often by choice, says Yongseok Shin, a professor of economics, who co-wrote the paper. Since this group already put in longer hours than the typical U.S. worker—and women at the highest income levels—these high earners had longer work days to trim, Dr. Shin says, and still worked more hours than the average.
The drop in working hours among high-earning men and women helps explain why the U.S. job market is even tighter than what would be expected given the current levels of unemployment and labour force participation, Dr. Shin says.
“These are the people who have that bargaining power,” Dr. Shin says of the leverage many workers have had over their employers in a tight job market. “They have the privilege to decide how many hours they want to work without worrying too much about their economic livelihood.”
The paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, which isn’t yet peer reviewed, suggests high earners were more likely to benefit from flexible working arrangements, which could be a factor in reduced work hours.
Before the pandemic, Eli Albrecht, a lawyer in the Washington, D.C., area, says he worked between 80 to 90 hours a week. Now, he says he puts in 60 to 70 hours each week. That’s still more than most men in America, who averaged 40.5 hours a week in 2021, according to federal data.
Mr. Albrecht’s schedule changed when he shared Zoom school duties for two of his young children with his wife. He’s maintained the reduced hours because it’s making his relationship more equitable, he says, and gives him family time.
“I used to feel—and a lot of dads used to feel—that just by providing for the family financially, that was sufficient. And it’s just not,” Mr. Albrecht says.
The downshift documented by Dr. Shin and his colleagues occurred as many professionals have been reassessing their ambitions and the value of working long hours. Emboldened by a strong job market, millions of Americans quit their jobs in search of better hours and more flexibility.
Overall, U.S. employees worked 18 fewer hours a year, on average, in 2022 compared with 2019, with employed men putting in 28 fewer hours last year and employed women cutting their time by nine hours, data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey show. The average male worker put in 2,006 hours last year, while the average female worker logged 1,758 hours.
Separate data from the Census Bureau suggests that men with families, in particular, are working less. Between 2019 and 2021, married men devoted roughly 13 fewer minutes, on average, to work each day, according to the American Time Use Survey, which hasn’t yet published 2022 figures. They spent more time on socialising and relaxing, as well as household activities, according to men surveyed by the Census Bureau. The amount of time unmarried men spent on work changed little during that same period.
As high-earning workers in the U.S. cut back, low-wage workers increased their hours, according to Dr. Shin’s research. The bottom-earning 10% of working men logged 41 hours more in 2022, on average, than in 2019. Women in the lowest earning group boosted their hours worked by 52 last year compared with 2019.
While women work fewer hours than men, the unpaid labor they perform outside of their jobs has been well documented. Many working mothers take what’s termed a “second shift,” devoting more time outside work hours to child care and housework.
Maryann B. Zaki, a mother of three who has worked at several firms, including in big law, recently launched her own practice in Houston, giving her more control over her hours. She says she’s noticed more men in her field opting for reduced schedules, sometimes working 80% of the hours normally expected—which can range from 40 to more than 80 a week—in exchange for a 20% pay cut. For the average lawyer, that would amount to a salary reduction of tens of thousands of dollars each year; such arrangements were initially offered to aid working mothers.
Responding to new expectations of work-life balance may be particularly vexing for industries already facing staffing shortages, such as those in medicine. Dr. Lotte Dyrbye, the chief well-being officer for the University of Colorado School of Medicine, said she often hears from early-career physicians and other medical professionals who want to work fewer hours to avoid burnout.
These medical workers are deciding that to be in it for the long haul requires a day every week or two to decompress, Dr. Dyrbye says. But as staff cut back their hours, it costs medical organisations money and may compromise access to care.
Predicted increases in value signals strength in local property market.