The Sotheby’s auction Saturday night featured nine paintings and two ceramics and the sale of the masterpieces took place two days before the 140th anniversary of the Spanish artist’s birth.
The artworks were owned by MGM Resorts and had been on display at the luxury Hotel Bellagio’s Picasso restaurant.
Femme au Béret Rouge-Orange (Woman in a red-orange beret) was the star of the show and sold for $40.5 million after a heated bidding war.
Painted in 1938, the portrait of Picasso’s lover and muse Marie-Thérèse Walter “stands as a crowning achievement amid one of Picasso’s most emphatically inspired and productive periods,” the auction house said in a statement.
The canvas was one of the last portraits Picasso made of Walter and had been expected to sell for between $20 and $30 million.
Homme et Enfant (Man and child) and Buste d’Homme (Bust of a man), both created in 1969, fetched $24.4 million and $9.5 million respectively.
But the surprise of the lot was Le Déjeuner Sur l’Herbe (Luncheon on the grass, 1959-1962), one of many variations Picasso created of Éduoard Manet’s modernist masterpiece, which went for $2.2 million when the gavel dropped, four times the expected amount.
Cover image: Pablo Picasso’s 1938 painting of Marie Therese is seen at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021 in Las Vegas.
Text courtesy of EFE