artrepublic was the first gallery to bring Mark Rothko’s to the UK and now an abstract by the American artist is tipped to fetch $50m. The large scale work is leading Sotheby’s autumn sale of post-war and contemporary art, and is expected to sell for as much as £30.8m.

No.1 (Royal Red and Blue) is one of only two works still remaining in private ownership. It has been in the same collection for three decades and was one of eight works chosen by Rothko for his major solo exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Sotheby’s worldwide head of contemporary art Tobian Meyer, has noted that “demand for key works by the artist has been insatiable.” The announcement follows those for major works by Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, and others in recent weeks, revealing the art market to be in solid recovery with soaring prices and an expanding, global pool of collectors.