One of the most iconic paintings in history has become the most expensive art work ever sold at auction.
In twelve minutes of frantic bidding at Sotheby’s in New York, Nowegian expressionist Edvard Munch’s ‘The Scream’ went under the hammer for just under 120 millon dollars.
A mystery telephone bidder paid $119,922,500, the equivalent of some 91 million euros, including commission.
Some Sotheby’s officials said the record-breaking sale was the highlight of their careers.
“I’ve been here about three decades and I would say this is the most exciting moment,” said David Norman of the auction house’s Impressionist and Modern Art Department. “ I think the first came in 2004 when we sold the first $100 million (USD) picture and now to shatter that record again….”
‘The Scream’ easily eclipsed the old auction record held by Picasso’s ‘Nude, green leaves and bust,’
which sold for $106.5 million at Christie’s two years
This sale of this version of Munch’s masterpiece, the only one still owned privately, was not the only memorable moment.
Works by Picasso and Miro also brought in big money, although nowhere near the amount paid for ‘The Scream.’
The result was Sotheby’s highest total ever for an Impressionist and Modern Art auction.