Do you know about the most expensive paintings that were sold in 2017, their auctioned prices and the information about the people who sold & purchased them?
1. Leonardo da Vinci, Salvator Mundi (c. 1500).It was sold for $450.3 million (Rs 2,940 crore)
At $450.3 million (Rs 2,940 crore), Leonardo da Vinci's 15th-century artwork titled Salvator Mundi (Saviour of the World) has become the talk of the planet for being the most expensive painting sold via auction.
At the auction house’s headquarters in New York, Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi has been displayed alone in a sleek black-walled room which created a sense of spectacle and reverence. The crowds turned out in huge numbers and sometimes, with some people waiting over an hour to have the glimpse of the work. Whether the high price was due to the marketing, the prestige, or some murky Gulf region geopolitics, we’ll never know, but the painting was reportedly purchased by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud and will be exhibited in the newly opened Louvre Abu Dhabi.
2. Qi Baishi, Twelve Landscape Screens (1925). Sold for $140.8 million
The twelve small ink-brush paintings by Qi, Twelve Landscape Screens were sold in December 2017 for $140.8 million (931.5 million yuan) at Poly Beijing, setting a record for a Chinese work of art sold at the auction. The group of the 12 panels were painted in 1925. Although the self-taught painter is barely known outside China, his pieces can command prices associated with artists such as Pablo Picasso and Andy Warhol. The sale makes Qi the first Chinese artist to surpass $100 million for one piece, the auction house said. It declined to reveal the buyer’s identity. The work, Twelve Landscape Screens, depicts mountains, villages and trees in bloom, with soft blue, grey, brown and pink tones. The panels measures 1.8 meters by 47cm.
3. Jean-Michel Basquiat, Untitled (1982), sold for $110.4 million
Jean-Michel Basquiat’s powerful 1982 painting of a skull brought $110.5 million at Sotheby’s, to become the sixth most expensive work ever sold at the auction. The large, intense canvas of a skull on a bright-blue background had not been publicly exhibited in 35 years and it had been in the collection of Emily and Jerry Spiegel after it was purchased at Christie’s in May 1984 for $19,000. In May 2017, Yusaku Maezawa, the Japanese e-commerce billionaire purchased the Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Untitled (1982)
4. Vincent van Gogh, Laboureur dans un champ (1889), sold for $81.3 million
Van Gogh’s dazzling landscape Laboureur dans un champ was painted in early September 1889 after his doctor permitted him to return to painting following a series of mental breakdowns. The painting depicts van Gogh’s view from his asylum in Southern France, and came from the collection of Texas oil billionaires Nancy Lee Bass and Perry Richardson Bass. The new buyer was Rebecca Wei, president of Christie’s Asia, on behalf of a client.
5. Fernand Léger, Contraste de formes (1913), sold for $70 million
Painted by Fernand Léger in 1913, Contraste de formes belongs to a series of paintings that changed forever the way we look at art. Léger’s canvas, painted at a crucial moment in the artist’s career, not only sold for $70 million, but also smashed the record for the artist, previously set at $39.2 million by La femme en bleu (study) (1912–13) at a 2008 sale at Sotheby’s in New York.