Picasso’s Women of Algiers has become the most expensive painting to sell at auction, going for $160m (£102.6m) at Christie’s in New York.
The final sale was made from a telephone buyer after around eleven minutes of prolonged bidding. It was estimated to sell for $140m and the final price of $179.3m (including commission of just over 12%) far exceeded this.
The sale also featured Alberto Giacometti’s life-size sculpture Pointing Man, which set its own record.
It is now the most expensive sculpture sold at auction, after going for $141.3m (£90.6m). Both buyers chose to remain anonymous.
The previous world record for a painting sold at auction was $142.4m, for British painter Francis Bacon’s Three Studies of Lucian Freud in 2013.
The Picasso oil painting is a vibrant, cubist depiction of nude courtesans, and is part of a 15-work series the Spanish artist created in 1954-55 designated with the letters A to O.
“This is an absolutely blockbuster picture – it’s one of the most exciting pictures that we’ve seen on the market for 10 years,” said Philip Hoffman, founder and CEO of the Fine Art Fund Group.
source: Reuters and BBC World News