The 500-year-old painting is, by far, the most expensive work ever sold at auction. The long-awaited sale of Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi (c. 1500), reportedly the last known work by the Renaissance master to change hands privately, took place at Christie’s for $450.3 million. It is, without a doubt, the most expensive piece of art ever to be sold at auction. The price is more than twice as much as Picasso’s Les femmes d’Alger (Version ‘O’), which sold for $179.4 million in 2015.
Alex Rotter, the global co-head of contemporary art at Christie’s, sold the piece to an unnamed client. Bidding started at $70 million in front of a jam-packed salesroom and numerous camera phones raised in the air. Five bidders—four on the phones and one in the room—were still vying for the painting at $190 million. Rotter and Francois De Poortere, the head of Christie’s New York’s Old Master painting department, were the final two competitors in the 19-minute match. Jussi Pylkkanen, the auctioneer, pulled out a glass of ice water from behind the rostrum and took a sip at $352 million.
After a protracted bidding war in which Rotter’s customer continued to bid in increments as big as $30 million—while De Poortere’s client bid in smaller amounts of approximately $2 million to $5 million—the work was finally completed for $400 million to a flutter of cheers (and a few gasps). The total cost, including the auction house’s fees, was $450.3 million. The artwork was one of 58 pieces offered in Christie’s postwar and contemporary art auction on Wednesday at Rockefeller Center in New York.
Russian oligarch Dmitry Rybolovlev, who purchased Salvator Mundi in 2013, consigned it. A third party guaranteed the painting at tonight’s auction, which meant that an outside buyer had agreed to buy the piece for $100 million in advance. (The guarantor will get a portion of the earnings beyond $100 million in return for the early commitment.)
The auction company decided to include the piece in its evening contemporary art auction because it believed it would appeal to the most prestigious art collectors regardless of when it was created. And, following a long series of aggressive offers, Rotter emerged triumphant in the final confrontation between an Old Master specialist (De Poortere) and a contemporary one.
The most expensive painting sold at auction was Pablo Picasso’s Les femmes d’Alger (Version ‘O’) (1955), which fetched $179.4 million at another genre-blending Christie’s sale in May 2015. (After considering inflation, the cost is almost $186 million in 2017 dollars.) Salvator Mundi quickly became the most expensive Old Master painting ever sold at auction, despite being a part of the current sale. It surpassed the previous high bid of $76.7 million ($106 million currently) for Peter Paul Rubens’ Massacre of the Innocents (1612) at Sotheby’s in 2002.
The history of Leonardo’s artwork is dramatic and involves a royal family, a contentious court case, and an estate auction. It was ordered for the French Royal collection but was lost for many years. A group of merchants had the artwork verified as a genuine Leonardo in 2005 after discovering it at an estate sale. For an estimated $75 million to $80 million, they sold the piece to a Swiss dealer and self-proclaimed “freeport king,” Yves Bouvier, in 2013. Bouvier later sold the project to Dmitry Rybolovlev, a Russian business magnate, for an estimated $127.5 million. The enormous markup finally sparked a complex legal dispute between the two men in international courts.
Even though Rybolovlev made a healthy profit on his acquisition, the world-record selling did little to mend the billionaire’s friendship with his former advisor. In a statement to Artnet News, a Rybolovlev family office spokesman said, “Thanks to the professionalism and knowledge of Christie’s, the record-breaking sale of Da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi has helped restore some of the value of the collection.” “The Rybolovlev family trusts applaud this development as we pursue legal action to address the appalling alleged fraud committed by Yves Bouvier, who fooled the family while posing as a friend and advisor,” the statement reads.
The work’s lower Christie’s offering price—$27.5 million less than Rybolovlev paid—is thought to have been influenced by difficulties with condition and restoration. Before its premiere in a 2012 Leonardo exhibition at the National Gallery in London, the damaged piece underwent extensive restoration. Before the auction, attorney Thomas Danziger told Artnet News that the subsequent purchase by the current owner at a very high price “certainly validates the marketplace and the legitimacy of the picture and would justify an even higher purchase price in the auction room tonight.” Danziger was the legal representative of the group of three dealers who sold the piece privately through Sotheby’s in 2013 as well.
St. John the Baptist, 1515 #highrenaissance #leonardodavinci https://t.co/w98KKdByRQ pic.twitter.com/DYp9qE9U3N
— Leonardo da Vinci (@ArtistDaVinci) September 11, 2022
The selling of the picture sparked a bit of a Leonardo frenzy. There were lineups around the block on almost every stop of its promotional globe tour, including in San Francisco and London. A little over 27,000 people visited to view the painting. Seventy-five media representatives signed up to cover the auction tonight. (Christie’s said that it reached capacity.) The auction house also took the unconventional step of forcing potential bidders to register for a unique red paddle in advance to participate in the Leonardo activity.
Stories concerning the mysterious orb and what drove Leonardo, a devoted student of optics, to depict it with less than perfect precision arose in response to the painting’s fascination. The author Walter Isaacson, who recently published a new biography on the Renaissance genius, was questioned about the startling outcome on Twitter. He responded, “I think it reflects the ongoing fascination of Leonardo. He blesses us like Salvator Mundi, with a pointed hand reaching out from mystery.
According to Artnet News critic Ben Davis, Christie’s sale is “the latest and maybe most persuasive harbinger that we are living in the End Times,” according to his insightful image analysis. The painting sold for a price that exceeded most people’s expectations. Start the end times now.
This is all about in this article related to Which Was Leonardo Da Vinci Last Painting? I hope you like This post. If you like this, please drop your valuable comment in the comment section and share this post with Your friend. Stay tuned for more latest updates at Lee Daily. You must Check Our Articles. For more information, Bookmark our website leedaily.com.