Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Bacon Record?

According to the BBC, Francis Bacon's triptych Three Studies of Lucian Freud (1969) has became the most expensive artwork sold at auction. It fetched $142m (£89m, 106m euro thingies) at Christie's New York sale (CLICK). Both the triptych and the price paid for it are obscene. Christie's hasn't disclosed the identity of the buyer, but it's a safe bet that Sheikha Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bint al-Thani, head of the Qatar Museums Authority (QMA), footed the bill. She has an estimated $1 billion per year to spend on art (CLICK). Being a Muslim country, Qatar has no tradition of European-style art. It may have wonderful architecture and lots of pretty patterns, but Islam's edict against idolatry precludes great paintings. So the forward-thinking QMA is out to plunder European art. Last year it paid $250m (£158m) for Paul Cézanne's daub Card Players (c. 1891), a record price which hasn't been beaten by Bacon's tripe (CLICK).


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