The paintings of the three titans of modern art were sold at auction for almost 166 million dollars (134 million pounds), which confirms the vigor of the world market.
At a contemporary art sale at Sotheby’s in New York on Tuesday, more than $ 408 million was paid for the work of artists such as Picasso, Monet, Cezanne, Gauguin, Magritte, Dali and Renoir.
Ten works were sold for more than $ 10 million each in an auction that was broadcast live on Instagram, which attracted nearly 20,000 viewers.
Pablo Picasso’s “Femme nue Couchée,” a sensual depiction of the muse and beloved artist, Marie-Thérèse Walter, as a multifaceted sea creature, went for $ 67.5 million. It was one of the highest prices ever achieved for a portrait of Walter, whose relationship with Picasso began when she was 17 years old.
Brooke Lampley, chair and head of global fine art sales at Sotheby’s, said the 1932 painting was “a deeply lyrical ode to the boundless desire of artist Maria Theresa; with its infinitely pliable fin-like limbs, the portrait continues to fascinate, as it perfectly depicts Picasso’s muse as the supreme expression of his genius.
Six more of Picasso’s works were sold at auction, including L’Étreinte, which depicts a man and woman hugging in a bedroom for $ 14.1 million.
Claude Monet’s painting The Grand Canal and Santa Maria della Salute, completed in 1908, became the most valuable view of Venice, sold by the artist at auction for $ 56.6 million. Another Monet, Les Arceaux de Roses, Giverny, was sold for $ 23.3 million.
After the auction, Lampley said: “Two titans of contemporary art – Pablo Picasso and Claude Monet – acted as flag bearers in the market tonight … Both works showcased artists at the peak of their powers, each representing a separate moment of transformation that will play a key role. in defining their careers ”.
Clerier Paul Cezanne (Glade), for $ 41.7 million, was one of three paintings by classical Impressionists sold by the Toledo Museum. Art create a fund to finance artistic acquisitions. The others were Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s “Nu s’essuyant” and Henri Matisse’s “Fleurs ou Fleurs Devant un Portrait”.
One third of the works put up for sale have not been put up for auction for at least 20 years. Sotheby’s said collectors in Asia are actively bidding, which is a hallmark of recent high-profile auctions.
Helena Newman, world head of Sotheby’s Impressionist and Contemporary Art, said the total sales from the auction – the third highest in the history of the auction house – “testifies to the steady demand of our global collectors for classic Impressionist and contemporary works.”
“We have seen high prices for the works of the giants of modern art, from Monet and Cezanne to Madigliani, Matisse, Picasso, Giacometti and de Kooning, which shows that this period of art continued in the international market.”
This week, $ 246.1 million was sold at the second auction of contemporary and contemporary works from the collection of Harry and Linda McLaw. The sale was appointed by a judge under a strict divorce agreement.
The first tranche that went under the hammer last November, sold for $ 676 millionresulting in a total collection of more than $ 922 million.