Picasso, Giacometti break sales records in New York auction

New York, May 12:

A later work by Pablo Picasso and a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti sold for $179.36 million and $141.28 million, respectively, becoming the most expensive artworks to be sold at an auction so far, Efe news agency reported.

Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso

London-based fine art auction house Christie’s sold the two pieces in New York on Monday in an auction entitled “Looking forward to the past”, breaking all records when Picasso’s painting “Les femmes d’Alger (Version O)” was sold at the multi-million-dollar bidding price.

The 1955 painting, whose title means “Women of Algiers”, is part of a series of 15 paintings, inspired by a work of the same name by French artist Eugene Delacroix.

“Les femmes d’Alger (Version O) is also, like that of Bacon, a dialogue between the two artists (Picasso and Delcroix),” Ana Maria Celis from the contemporary art department at Christie’s told Efe.

The painting turned out to be the most photographed item on the historic night, while two other Picasso paintings were also sold for $67.3 million and $4.3 million, respectively, collecting a total amount of $251 million.

Meanwhile, Swiss sculptor Alberto Giacometti’s “L’homme au doigt” (Pointing Man) set a record price of $141.28 million.

This amount exceeded the $104.3 million acquired in the London sale of Giacometti’s “L’homme qui marche” (Walking Man) in 2010, thereby breaking his own record.

The nearly 70-inch bronze piece made in 1947 belongs to a series of six works, and is the only one hand-painted by the artist.

With only 34 works auctioned, the “Looking forward to the past” series added $705.85 million to Christie’s coffers.

Other notable works sold included “Le Parlement, soleil couchant” (The Parliament, setting sun) by Claude Monet for $40.48 million, “No. 36 (Black Stripe)” by Mark Rothko which sold for $40.48 million, and the “Silver Liz” diptych by Andy Warhol for $28.16 million.

Christie’s is yet to disclose the identity of the buyers. (IANS)

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