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Despite the reeling economy, Damien Hirst's auction yesterday of 223 works raked in $127.2 million in only its first half. "While Mr. Hirst risked flooding his own market, he had also spent several months courting potential buyers. Still, he could not anticipate the sale’s timing, amid news that Lehman Brothers had filed for bankruptcy.... Sotheby’s was said to be taking steps to ensure that the sale did not fall flat, like offering buyers a six-month grace period to pay for purchases." Now consider that the Hirst works on the auction block, going for upwards of $13 million each, were all created in the last two years, and you've got even more reason to be depressed. [NYT]