Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Nude Sitting on a Divan - Amedeo Modigliani

Price in US $ -69 million

Nude Sitting on a Divan (The Beautiful Roman Woman) is an oil on canvas painting by Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani. The work was one of a series of nudes painted by Modigliani in 1917 that created a sensation when exhibited in Paris that year.  Simultaneously abstracted and erotically detailed, they exhibit a formal grace referencing nude figures of the Italian Renaissance

The Paris show of 1917 was Modigliani's only solo exhibition during his life, and is "notorious" in modern art history for its sensational public reception and the attendant issues of obscenity.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

No 1 (Royal Red and Blue) - Mark Rothko

Price in US $ - 75.1 million

Mark Rothko’s magisterial abstraction, “No.1 (Royal Red and Blue)” (1954) is one of the most widely exhibited and written-about painting from the collection of Anne and John Marion.  Its impressive history included the artist’s first museum exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago, where it showed alongside eight other Rothkos in 1954, in what was then a contemporary artist showcase. Most of the other examples are now housed in museums, including the Guggenheim Bilbao and the Whitney Museum of American Art. It was described by Sotheby's as "a seminal, large-scale masterpiece".


Monday, October 1, 2012

The Darmstadt Madonna - Hans Holbein the Younger.

Price in US $ - 75 million

The Darmstadt Madonna (also known as "The Madonna With the Family of Mayor Meyer") is a masterpiece oil painting by Hans Holbein the Younger.

The painting was influenced by Italian Renaissance religious painting, with elements of Netherlandish portrait painting. The painting was earlier located in Darmstadt - hence its title.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Orange, Red, Yellow - Mark Rothko

Price in US $ - 86 million

Orange, Red, Yellow, a 1961 Color Field painting by Mark Rothko, has become the most expensive post-war work sold at auction. The painting's trio of orange and yellow rectangles bobbing atop a cherry-red background forms a palette that's as eye-catching as a sunset or a Popsicle. Rothko's shimmering "colour field" paintings have never been as attention grabbing as his macho Action Painting contemporaries Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock.

These subtly spiritual works, when properly lit, are thought to offer a similar lofty experience that one gets in a place of worship, like a cathedral. Only their refusal to associate with language, or any period in art history, mean they transcend the specificity of religion.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Portrait of Alfonso d'Avalos, Marquis of Vasto, in Armor with a Page - Titian

Price in US $ - 70 million

Titian's Portrait of Alfonso d'Avalos (Governor of Milan and commander general of imperial forces in Italy under the Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V), painted in Bologna in the winter of 1533, signals the inception of one of the most influential prototypes in the history of Western art-the standing state portrait. Titian, along with Raphael, set the standard for court portraiture during the subsequent development of Western painting. This portrait heralds such remarkable later paintings as Anthony van Dyck's Portrait of Agostino Pallavicini, Domenico Fetti's Portrait of a Man with a Sheet of Music, and Guercino's Pope Gregory XV.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Scream - Edvard Munch

Price in US $ -  119.9million

The Scream by Expressionist artist Edvard Munch is the name given to four versions of a composition, created as both paintings and pastels, between 1893 and 1910.The Scream has been the target of several high-profile art thefts. In 1994, the version in the National Gallery (Oslo) was stolen. It was recovered several months later. In 2004, both The Scream and Madonna (also by Munch) were stolen from the Munch Museum, and recovered two years later. In the painting, even the sky expresses the narcissism of despair, the figures in the background seem as melancholy and lost as the screamer. And the face does not scream, rather it is a scream.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Card Players - Paul Cézanne

Price in US $ - 250 million

The Card Players is a series of oil paintings by the French Post-Impressionist artist Paul Cézanne. Whereas previous paintings of the genre had illustrated heightened moments of drama, Cézanne's portraits have been noted for their lack of drama, narrative, and conventional characterization.One critic described the scenes as "human still life", while another speculated the men's intense focus on their game mirrors that of the painter's absorption in his art.


Saturday, March 31, 2012

Woman with Folded Arms - Pablo Picasso

Price in US $ - 55 million

Woman with Folded Arms (Femme aux Bras Croisés ) was painted by Pablo Picasso in 1902 during his Blue Period.

The unknown model was an inmate of the Saint-Lazare hospital-prison in Paris - probably someone who had recently attempted suicide and now carried the blank but menacing stare of those unfortunates who found themselves at Saint-Lazare during the early 1900s.

While the identity of the woman in the painting is unknown, the inspiration for the Picasso Blue Period came from the tragic suicide of his friend and roommate Carlos Casagemas. Only 19 years old at the age of his death, the young Picasso then went through a 3 year period in which all of his paintings were awash with blue shades suggesting the misery and grief of his subjects.