List of most expensive paintings

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Salvator Mundi by Leonardo da Vinci (c. 1500) is the most expensive painting ever sold as of 2019. Leonardo da Vinci, Salvator Mundi, c.1500, oil on walnut, 45.4 x 65.6 cm.jpg
Salvator Mundi by Leonardo da Vinci (c. 1500) is the most expensive painting ever sold as of 2019.

This is a list of the highest known prices paid for paintings. The current record price is approximately US$450 million paid for Leonardo da Vinci's Salvator Mundi in November 2017. [1] [2]

United States dollar Currency of the United States of America

The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States and its territories per the United States Constitution since 1792. In practice, the dollar is divided into 100 smaller cent (¢) units, but is occasionally divided into 1000 mills (₥) for accounting. The circulating paper money consists of Federal Reserve Notes that are denominated in United States dollars.

Leonardo da Vinci 15th and 16th-century Italian Renaissance polymath

Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci, more commonly Leonardo da Vinci or simply Leonardo, was an Italian polymath of the Renaissance whose areas of interest included invention, drawing, painting, sculpting, architecture, science, music, mathematics, engineering, literature, anatomy, geology, astronomy, botany, writing, history, and cartography. He has been variously called the father of palaeontology, ichnology, and architecture, and he is widely considered one of the greatest painters of all time. The Mona Lisa is the most famous of his works and the most popular portrait ever made. The Last Supper is the most reproduced religious painting of all time and his Vitruvian Man drawing is regarded as a cultural icon as well. Perhaps 15 of his paintings have survived. Nevertheless, these few works—together with his notebooks, which contain drawings, scientific diagrams, and his thoughts on the nature of painting—compose a contribution to later generations of artists rivalled only by that of Leonardo's contemporary Michelangelo.

<i>Salvator Mundi</i> (Leonardo) painting by Leonardo da Vinci

Salvator Mundi is a painting by Italian Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci dated to c. 1500. Long thought to be a copy of a lost original veiled with overpainting, it was rediscovered, restored, and included in a major Leonardo exhibition at the National Gallery, London, in 2011–12. Although several leading scholars have considered it to be an original work by Leonardo, this attribution has been disputed by other specialists, some of whom posit that he only contributed certain elements.



The most famous paintings, especially old master works done before 1803, are generally owned or held at museums, for viewing by patrons. Since the museums rarely sell them they are considered priceless. Guinness World Records lists da Vinci's Mona Lisa as having the highest ever insurance value for a painting. On permanent display at the Louvre in Paris, the Mona Lisa was assessed at US$100 million on December 14, 1962. Taking inflation into account, the 1962 value would be around US$830 million in 2018. [3]

Museum institution that holds artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, cultural, historical, or other importance

A museum is an institution that cares for (conserves) a collection of artifacts and other objects of artistic, cultural, historical, or scientific importance. Many public museums make these items available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary. The largest museums are located in major cities throughout the world, while thousands of local museums exist in smaller cities, towns and rural areas. Museums have varying aims, ranging from serving researchers and specialists to serving the general public. The goal of serving researchers is increasingly shifting to serving the general public.

<i>Guinness World Records</i> Reference book listing world records

Guinness World Records, known from its inception from 1955 until 2000 as The Guinness Book of Records and in previous United States editions as The Guinness Book of World Records, is a reference book published annually, listing world records both of human achievements and the extremes of the natural world. The brainchild of Sir Hugh Beaver, the book was co-founded by brothers Norris and Ross McWhirter in Fleet Street, London in August 1954.

<i>Mona Lisa</i> Painting by Leonardo da Vinci

The Mona Lisa is a half-length portrait painting by the Italian Renaissance artist Leonardo da Vinci that has been described as "the best known, the most visited, the most written about, the most sung about, the most parodied work of art in the world." The Mona Lisa is also one of the most valuable paintings in the world. It holds the Guinness World Record for the highest known insurance valuation in history at US$100 million in 1962.

The earliest sale on the list below ( Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers by Vincent van Gogh) is from March 1987; with a price of £24.75 million (£68.4 million in 2018 currency). This sale tripled the previous record, and introduced a new era in top art sales. Before this, the highest absolute price paid for a painting was £8.1 million (£18.9 million in 2018 currency) paid by the J. Paul Getty Museum for Andrea Mantegna's Adoration of the Magi at Christie's in London on April 18, 1985. [4] In constant dollars, the highest price paid before 1987 was by the National Gallery of Art when in February 1967 they acquired Leonardo da Vinci's Ginevra de' Benci for around $5 million ($38 million in 2018 dollars) from the Princely Family of Liechtenstein. The sale of Van Gogh's Sunflowers was the first time a "modern" (in this case 1888) painting became the record holder, as opposed to the old master paintings which previously had dominated the market. In contrast, there are currently only nine pre-1875 paintings among the listed top 89, and none created between 1635 and 1874.

Vincent van Gogh Influential Dutch Post-Impressionist painter (1853–1890)

Vincent Willem van Gogh was a Dutch post-impressionist painter who is among the most famous and influential figures in the history of Western art. In just over a decade he created about 2,100 artworks, including around 860 oil paintings, most of them in the last two years of his life. They include landscapes, still lifes, portraits and self-portraits, and are characterised by bold colours and dramatic, impulsive and expressive brushwork that contributed to the foundations of modern art. He was not commercially successful, and his suicide at 37 followed years of mental illness and poverty.

J. Paul Getty Museum Art museum in Los Angeles, California

The J. Paul Getty Museum, commonly referred to as the Getty, is an art museum in California housed on two campuses: the Getty Center and Getty Villa. The two locations received over two million visitors in 2016.

Andrea Mantegna Italian Renaissance painter

Andrea Mantegna was an Italian painter, a student of Roman archeology, and son-in-law of Jacopo Bellini. Like other artists of the time, Mantegna experimented with perspective, e.g. by lowering the horizon in order to create a sense of greater monumentality. His flinty, metallic landscapes and somewhat stony figures give evidence of a fundamentally sculptural approach to painting. He also led a workshop that was the leading producer of prints in Venice before 1500.

An exceptional case is graffiti artist David Choe, who accepted payment in shares for painting graffiti art in the headquarters of a fledgling Facebook. His shares were of limited value when he was given them, but by the time of Facebook's IPO they were valued at around $200m. [5]

David Choe American painter

David Choe is an American street artist. His figure paintings, which explore themes of desire, degradation, and exaltation, are characterized by a raw, frenetic tone that he has termed "dirty style." In the graffiti world, he is identified with the bucktoothed whale he has been spray-painting on the streets since he was in his teens. David also hosted DVDASA, a lifestyle, relationship and entertainment podcast with co-host Asa Akira. He also became widely recognized for his watercolor works which exhibited in his solo show at the Museo Universario del Chopo, Mexico City in 2013. After receiving extensive therapy and treatment, he quietly reemerged in 2017 with a new body of work and a comprehensive exhibition in Los Angeles that presented heavy themes of trauma, self-reflection and hope for recovery.

Share (finance) single unit of ownership in a corporation, mutual fund, or any other organization

In financial markets, a share is a unit used as mutual funds, limited partnerships, and real estate investment trusts. The owner of shares in the corporation/company is a shareholder of the corporation. A share is an indivisible unit of capital, expressing the ownership relationship between the company and the shareholder. The denominated value of a share is its face value, and the total of the face value of issued shares represent the capital of a company, which may not reflect the market value of those shares.

Facebook Global online social networking service

Facebook, Inc. is an American online social media and social networking service company based in Menlo Park, California. It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, along with fellow Harvard College students and roommates Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris Hughes. It is considered one of the Big Four technology companies along with Amazon, Apple, and Google.

The list is incomplete with respect to sales between private parties, as these are not always reported and, even if they are, details like the purchase price may remain secret. For example, on 25 June 2019, the American hedge fund manager J. Tomilson Hill bought a recently rediscovered Judith and Holofernes (1607) attributed to Caravaggio, two days before it would have been auctioned in Toulouse. [6] Though the Louvre Museum had turned down the opportunity to purchase it for €100 million, [7] the painting was estimated to sell for $110 to $170 million. [8] The actual purchase price will not be disclosed, because of a confidentiality agreement attached to the private sale. [6]

James Tomilson "Tom" Hill III is an American billionaire hedge fund manager, the vice chairman of the Blackstone Group, and president and CEO of Blackstone Alternative Asset Management (BAAM), the firm's hedge funds business. He sits on the firm's management and executive committees, and is a main board board of director.

Caravaggio 16th and 17th-century Italian painter

Michelangelo Merisida Caravaggio was an Italian painter active in Rome, Naples, Malta, and Sicily from the early 1590s to 1610. His paintings combine a realistic observation of the human state, both physical and emotional, with a dramatic use of lighting, which had a formative influence on Baroque painting.

Toulouse Prefecture and commune in Occitanie, France

Toulouse is the capital of the French department of Haute-Garonne and of the region of Occitanie. The city is on the banks of the River Garonne, 150 kilometres from the Mediterranean Sea, 230 km (143 mi) from the Atlantic Ocean and 680 km (420 mi) from Paris. It is the fourth-largest city in France, with 466,297 inhabitants as of January 2014. In France, Toulouse is called the "Pink City".

Van Gogh, Picasso, and Warhol

The Red Vineyard (1888), the only painting Vincent van Gogh sold during his lifetime Red vineyards.jpg
The Red Vineyard (1888), the only painting Vincent van Gogh sold during his lifetime

Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, and Andy Warhol are by far the best-represented artists in the list. Whereas Picasso and Warhol became wealthy men, Van Gogh is known to have sold only one painting in his lifetime, The Red Vineyard , for 400 francs (approximately $2,000 in 2018 dollars) to the impressionist painter and heiress Anna Boch. [9] Prices realised for just his nine paintings listed below, when adjusted for inflation to 2017, add up to over US$ 900 million.

Pablo Picasso 20th-century Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer

Pablo Ruiz Picasso was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, stage designer, poet and playwright who spent most of his adult life in France. Regarded as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, he is known for co-founding the Cubist movement, the invention of constructed sculpture, the co-invention of collage, and for the wide variety of styles that he helped develop and explore. Among his most famous works are the proto-Cubist Les Demoiselles d'Avignon (1907), and Guernica (1937), a dramatic portrayal of the bombing of Guernica by the German and Italian airforces during the Spanish Civil War.

Andy Warhol American artist

Andy Warhol was an American artist, director and producer who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art. His works explore the relationship between artistic expression, advertising, and celebrity culture that flourished by the 1960s, and span a variety of media, including painting, silkscreening, photography, film, and sculpture. Some of his best known works include the silkscreen paintings Campbell's Soup Cans (1962) and Marilyn Diptych (1962), the experimental film Chelsea Girls (1966), and the multimedia events known as the Exploding Plastic Inevitable (1966–67).

<i>The Red Vineyard</i> painting by Vincent van Gogh

The Red Vineyards near Arles is an oil painting by the Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh, executed on a privately primed Toile de 30 piece of burlap in early November 1888. It depicts workers in a vineyard, and is believed to be the only painting van Gogh sold during his lifetime.

Most expensive painting by a female artist

Georgia O'Keeffe holds the record for the highest price paid for a painting by a woman. On 20 November 2014 at Sotheby's, the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art bought her 1932 painting Jimson Weed/White Flower No. 1 for US$ 44.4 million (equivalent to US$47 million in 2018). [10] [11]

Most expensive non-Western paintings

Among the listed top 89, only 3 are paintings by non-Western artists. They are traditional Chinese paintings by Qi Baishi and Wang Meng. In particular, Qi Baishi's Twelve Landscape Screens was sold for $140.8m in 2017. Though just missing the list, notably, the Chinese-French painter Zao Wouki's oil painting Juin-Octobre 1985 was sold for $65m in 2018.

Interactive graph

List of most expensive paintings
Sale of the Most Expensive Paintings

List of highest prices paid

This list is ordered by consumer price index inflation-adjusted value (in bold) in millions of United States dollars in 2018. [note 1] Where necessary, the price is first converted to dollars using the exchange rate at the time the painting was sold. The inflation adjustment may change as recent inflation rates are often revised. A list in another currency may be in a slightly different order due to exchange-rate fluctuations. Paintings are listed only once, i.e. for the highest price sold.

Adjusted price
(in millions)
Original price
(in millions)
PaintingImageArtistYearDate of saleRank
at sale
SellerBuyerAuction house
$460.3$450.3 Salvator Mundi Leonardo da Vinci, Salvator Mundi, c.1500, oil on walnut, 45.4 x 65.6 cm.jpg Leonardo da Vinci c.1500November 15, 20171 Dmitry Rybolovlev Badr bin Abdullah Al Saud [note 2] Christie's, New York [14]
~$317~$300 Interchange Willem de Kooning 1955September 20151 David Geffen Foundation Kenneth C. Griffin Private sale [15]
$278 +$250 + [note 3] The Card Players Paul Cezanne 222.jpg Paul Cézanne 1892/93April 20111 George Embiricos State of Qatar Private sale [16] [17] [18]
$222$210 [19] Nafea Faa Ipoipo
(When Will You Marry?)
Paul Gauguin, Nafea Faa Ipoipo%3F (When Will You Marry%3F) 1892, oil on canvas, 101 x 77 cm.jpg Paul Gauguin 1892September 20142 Rudolf Staechelin heirsState of QatarPrivate sale [20]
~$211~$200 Number 17A Jackson Pollock 1948September 20154David Geffen FoundationKenneth C. GriffinPrivate sale [15]
$197.7$183.8Wasserschlangen II Klimt - Wasserschlangen II (Freundinnen) - 1904.jpeg Gustav Klimt 1904-0720132 Yves Bouvier Dmitry Rybolovlev Private sale [note 4]
No. 6 (Violet, Green and Red) Mark Rothko 1951August 20143 Cherise Moueix Dmitry Rybolovlev Private sale via
Yves Bouvier [23]
for pair)
Pendant portraits of
Maerten Soolmans
and Oopjen Coppit
Pendant portraits of Maerten Soolmans and Oopjen Coppit.jpeg Rembrandt 1634September 20157 Éric de Rothschild Rijksmuseum
and Louvre
Private sale
$189.6$179.4 Les Femmes d'Alger
("Version O")
Pablo Picasso 1955May 11, 20155Private collection Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani [25] Christie's, New York [26]
$180.1$170.4 Nu couché Modigliani - Nu couche.jpg Amedeo Modigliani 1917/18November 9, 20159 Laura Mattioli Rossi Liu Yiqian [27] Christie's, New York [28]
$174$140 No. 5, 1948 Jackson Pollock1948November 2, 20061 David Geffen David Martinez Private sale via Sotheby's [29]
$170.9$137.5 Woman III Willem de Kooning1953November 18, 20062David GeffenSteven A. CohenPrivate sale via Larry Gagosian [30]
$168.7$165.0 Masterpiece Roy Lichtenstein 1962January 201712 Agnes Gund [31] [32] Steven A. Cohen [33] Private sale
$167.8$135 Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I Gustav Klimt, 1907, Adele Bloch-Bauer I, Neue Galerie New York.jpg Gustav Klimt1907June 18, 20061 Maria Altmann Ronald Lauder, Neue Galerie Private sale via Christie's [34]
$166.7$155 Le Rêve Pablo Picasso1932March 26, 20136 Steve Wynn Steven A. CohenPrivate sale [35]
$158.2$82.5 Portrait of Dr. Gachet Portrait of Dr. Gachet.jpg Vincent van Gogh 1890May 15, 19901 Siegfried Kramarsky heirs Ryoei Saito [note 5] [38] Christie's, New York
$157.2$157.2Nu couché (sur le côté gauche) Amedeo Modigliani 014.jpg Amedeo Modigliani1917May 15, 2018Sotheby's, New York [39]
$156.6$150 Adele Bloch-Bauer II Gustav Klimt 047.jpg Gustav Klimt1912201610 Oprah Winfrey [note 6] Unidentified buyer in ChinaPrivate sale via Larry Gagosian [40]
$153.2$142.4 Three Studies of Lucian Freud Francis Bacon 1969November 12, 20138 [note 7] Elaine Wynn, ex-wife of Steve Wynn [43] Christie's, New York [44]
$149.8$78.1 Bal du moulin de la Galette
[note 8]
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Le Moulin de la Galette.jpg Pierre-Auguste Renoir 1876May 17, 19902 Betsey Whitney Ryoei Saito [note 9] Sotheby's, New York
Twelve Landscape Screens Qi Baishi 1925December 17, 2017Beijing Poly Auction [45]
$138.2$104.2 Garçon à la pipe Garcon a la pipe.jpg Pablo Picasso1905May 5, 20043 Greentree Foundation
(Whitney family)
Guido Barilla (suspected) [46] Sotheby's, New York [47]
$130.9$119.9 The Scream [note 10] The Scream Pastel.jpg Edvard Munch 1895May 2, 20128 Petter Olsen Leon Black [48] Sotheby's, New York
$129.1$120Otahi Paul Gauguin 093.jpg Paul Gauguin1893201310 Yves Bouvier Dmitry Rybolovlev Private sale [note 11]
$129$118Reclining Nude With Blue Cushion Amedeo Modigliani Nu Couche au coussin Bleu.jpg Amedeo Modigliani191720128 Steven A. Cohen Dmitry Rybolovlev Private sale via Yves Bouvier [23]
$126.4$110.0Flag [note 12] Jasper Johns 1958March 20107 Jean-Christophe Castelli Steven A. CohenPrivate sale, estimated price [50]
$122.3$106.5 Nude, Green Leaves and Bust Pablo Picasso1932May 4, 20109 Frances Lasker Brody estate Leonard Blavatnik (suspected) [51] [52] Christie's, New York [53]
$121.3$58 plus
exchange of
works [note 13]
Portrait of Joseph Roulin Vincent van Gogh - Portrait of Joseph Roulin.jpg Vincent van Gogh1889August 1, 19891Private collection, Zürich Museum of Modern Art New York Private sale via
Thomas Ammann,
Fine Art Zurich [54]
$118.9$53.9 Irises Irises-Vincent van Gogh.jpg Vincent van Gogh1889November 11, 19871John Whitney Payson, son of Joan Whitney Payson Alan Bond [note 14] Sotheby's, New York
$118.3$95.2 Dora Maar au Chat Pablo Picasso1941May 3, 20066 Gidwitz family Boris Ivanishvili [55] Sotheby's, New York [56]
$116.4$100.0 Eight Elvises Andy Warhol 1963October 200810 Annibale Berlingieri The State of Qatar (suspected) [57] [58] Private sale via Philippe Ségalot [59]
$115$115 Young Girl with a Flower Basket Pablo Picasso, 1905, Fillette nue au panier de fleurs (Le panier fleuri), oil on canvas, 155 x 66 cm, private collection, New York.jpg Pablo Picasso1905May 8, 2018 David and Peggy Rockefeller Unidentified buyerChristie's, New York [60]
$113.7 +$105.7 + [note 15]
Anna's Light Barnett Newman 1968October 4, 2013 DIC Corp. Private sale [61] [62] [63]
$113.4$105.4 Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster) Andy Warhol1963November 13, 2013Sotheby's, New York [64]
$112.9$110.5Untitled Jean-Michel Basquiat 1982May 18, 2017Basquiat family Yusaku Maezawa [65] Sotheby’s, New York [66]
$110.7$110.7 Meules Claude Monet - Meules (W 1273).jpg Claude Monet 1890May 14, 2019Sotheby’s, New York [67]
$109.9$71.5 Portrait de l'artiste sans barbe Vincent Willem van Gogh 102.jpg Vincent van Gogh1889November 19, 19985 Jacques Koerfer  [ de ] heirsChristie's, New York
$108$100La Montagne Sainte-Victoire
vue du bosquet du Château Noir
Sainte-Victoire.jpg Paul Cézanne19042013 [note 16] Edsel and Eleanor Ford House State of Qatar [68] Private sale [69] [70]
Massacre of the Innocents 0 Le Massacre des Innocents d'apres P.P. Rubens - Musees royaux des beaux-arts de Belgique (2).JPG Peter Paul Rubens 1611July 10, 20026an Austrian family Kenneth Thomson [note 17] Sotheby's, London
$100.8$95.4 Nurse Roy Lichtenstein1964November 9, 2015Christie's, New York [28]
$100.4$86.3 Triptych, 1976 Francis Bacon1976May 14, 2008 Jean-Pierre Moueix heirs [72] Roman Abramovich [73] Sotheby's, New York [74]
Les Noces de Pierrette Pablo Picasso1905November 30, 19893 Fredrik Roos  [ sv ] [75] Tomonori Tsurumaki Binoche et Godeau Paris
$99.4$80.0False StartJasper Johns1959October 12, 200611David GeffenKenneth C. GriffinPrivate sale via Richard Gray [76]
$98.9$57 A Wheatfield with Cypresses Vincent van Gogh - Wheat Field with Cypresses (National Gallery version).jpg Vincent van Gogh1889May 19936 Emil Georg Bührle's son Walter H. Annenberg [note 18] Private sale via Steven Mazoh
Te Fare (La maison) Te Fare (La maison) Paul Gauguin 1892.jpg Paul Gauguin1892June 2008 Yves Bouvier Dmitry Rybolovlev Private sale [note 19]
$96.7$47.8 Yo, Picasso Pablo Picasso1901May 9, 19892 Wendell Cherry Stavros Niarchos Sotheby's, New York
$96.7$80.0 Turquoise Marilyn Andy Warhol1964May 20, 2007Stefan EdlisSteven A. CohenPrivate sale via Larry Gagosian [78]
$95.3$70.0 Portrait of Alfonso d'Avalos with a Page Titian (Tiziano Vecellio) (Italian) - Portrait of Alfonso d'Avalos, Marquis of Vasto, in Armor with a Page - Google Art Project.jpg Titian 1533November 200310 AXA insurance company Getty Museum Private sale via
Hervé Aaron [79] [80]
$94.8$86.9 Orange, Red, Yellow Mark Rothko1961May 8, 2012 David Pincus estateChristie's, New York [81]
Le Bassin aux Nymphéas Le bassin aux nympheas - Claude Monet.jpg Claude Monet1919June 24, 2008 J. Irwin and Xenia S. Miller Christie's, London [82]
$91.9$91.9 Chop Suey Edward Hopper 1929November 13, 2018 Barney A. Ebsworth estateChristie's, New York [83]
$91$60.5 Rideau, Cruchon et Compotier Paulcezanneart.jpg Paul Cézanne1894May 10, 19999 Whitney Family [note 20] Sotheby's, New York
$90.3$90.3 Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures) David Hockney 1972November 15, 2018Christie’s , New York [85]
$89.1$84.2 Black Fire I Barnett Newman1961May 13, 2014Private CollectionAnonymousChristie's, New York [86]
$88$72.8 White Center (Yellow, Pink
and Lavender on Rose)
Mark Rothko1950May 15, 2007 David Rockefeller, Sr. Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani [87] Sotheby's, New York [88]
Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers Vincent Willem van Gogh 127.jpg Vincent van Gogh1888March 30, 19871Helen Beatty,
daughter-in-law of
Chester Beatty
Yasuo Goto, Yasuda Comp. Christie's, London
$86.7$81.9 Triple Elvis Andy Warhol1963November 12, 2014 WestSpiel  [ de ] [89] Christie's, New York [90]
$86.7$71.7 Green Car Crash
(Green Burning Car I)
Andy Warhol1963May 16, 2007Private collection, Zürich Philip Niarchos Christie's, New York [91]
$86.6$81.9 No. 10 Mark Rothko1958May 13, 2015Christie's, New York [92] [93]
$85.8$85.8 Suprematist Composition Suprematist Composition - Kazimir Malevich.jpg Kazimir Malevich 1916May 15, 2018The Nahmad familyAnonymousChristie's, New York [note 21]
$85.5$80.8Three Studies for a
Portrait of John Edwards
Francis Bacon1984May 13, 2014Private CollectionAnonymousChristie's, New York. [86]
$85$81.4 Meule Monet Grainstack in the Sunlight 1891.jpg Claude Monet1891November 16, 2016Christie's, New York [97]
$84.7$84.7Nymphéas en fleur Claude Monet - Nympheas en fleur.jpg Claude Monet1914-1917May 8, 2018 David and Peggy Rockefeller Unidentified buyerChristie's, New York [98]
(€50-60) [note 22]
Darmstadt Madonna Darmstadtmadonna.jpg Hans Holbein 1526July 12, 2011 Donatus, Landgrave of Hesse Reinhold Würth Private sale via
Christoph Graf Douglas [99]
$83.1$81.3 Laboureur dans un champ Van Gogh - Acker mit pflugenden Bauern.jpeg Vincent van Gogh1889November 13, 2017 Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass estateChristie's, New York [100]
Diana and Actaeon

Titian - Diana and Actaeon - 1556-1559.jpg

Titian1556–1559February 1, 2009 Duke of Sutherland National Galleries of Scotland
& National Gallery, London
Private sale [101] [102] [103]
$82.3$40.7 Au Lapin Agile Pablo Picasso, 1905, Au Lapin Agile (At the Lapin Agile), oil on canvas, 99.1 x 100.3 cm, Metropolitan Museum of Art.jpg Pablo Picasso1904November 27, 19895Linda de Roulet, daughter of Joan Whitney Payson Walter H. AnnenbergSotheby's, New York
$82.2$68 The Gross Clinic Thomas Eakins, American - Portrait of Dr. Samuel D. Gross (The Gross Clinic) - Google Art Project.jpg Thomas Eakins 1875April 12, 2007 Thomas Jefferson University Philadelphia Museum of Art Private sale [104]
$82$75.1 No 1 (Royal Red and Blue) Mark Rothko1954November 13, 2012 John and Anne Marion Sotheby's, New York [105]
Acrobate et jeune arlequin
[note 23]
Pablo Picasso1905November 28, 19883Roger Janssen heirs?
[note 24]
Mitsukoshi Christie's, London
$80.8$80.8Odalisque couchée aux magnolias Henri Matisse 1923May 8, 2018 David and Peggy Rockefeller Unidentified buyerChristie's, New York [106]
$80$55.0 Femme aux Bras Croisés Pablo Picasso, 1901-02, Femme aux Bras Croises, Woman with Folded Arms (Madchenbildnis), oil on canvas, 81 x 58 cm (32 x 23 in).jpg Pablo Picasso1902November 8, 2000 Chauncey McCormick heirsChristie's, New York [107]
$79.2$69.0 Nude Sitting on a Divan
("La Belle Romaine")
Amedeo Modigliani 063.jpg Amedeo Modigliani1917November 2, 2010 Halit Cıngıllıoglu [108] Sotheby's, New York [109]
$78.9$63.5 Police Gazette [110] Willem de Kooning1955October 12, 2006David GeffenSteven A. CohenPrivate sale via Richard Gray. [76]
Diana and Callisto TitianDianaCallistoEdinburgh.jpg Titian1556–1559March 2, 2012Duke of SutherlandNational Galleries of Scotland
& National Gallery, London
Private sale [111]
$74.6$70.5Untitled (New York City) Cy Twombly 1968November 11, 2015 Sydney M. Irmas heirsChristie's, New York [112]
$74.5$49.5Femme assise dans un jardinPablo Picasso1938November 10, 1999Robert Saidenberg [note 25] [114] Sotheby's, New York
Portrait of George Dyer Talking Francis Bacon 1966February 13, 2014Christie's, London [115] [116]
$74.1$47.5 Peasant Woman Against
a Background of Wheat
Vincent Willem van Gogh 097.jpg Vincent van Gogh1890199711Steve Wynn [note 26] Private sale via
Acquavella Galleries Inc.,
New York [118]
$73.7$69.6UntitledCy Twombly1970November 12, 2014Nicola del Roscio [89] Christie's, New York [119]
$73.7$69.6Four MarlonsAndy Warhol1966November 12, 2014WestSpiel [89] Christie's, New York [120]
Eagle Standing on Pine Tree [121] Qi Baishi Eagle.jpg Qi Baishi 1946May 22, 2011 Liu Yiqian Hunan TV & Broadcast
Intermediary Co [122]
China Guardian Auctions
$72.8$63.4 Men in Her Life Andy Warhol1962November 8, 2010 Jose Mugrabi Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani [123] Phillips de Pury & Company [124]
$71.6$70.1Contraste de formes Fernand Léger 1913November 13, 2017 Anna-Maria  [ de ] and Stephen Kellen  [ de ] FoundationChristie's, New York [125]
$71.3$67.45 La Gommeuse Pablo Picasso - La Gommeuse.jpg Pablo Picasso1901November 5, 2015 William I. Koch Sotheby's, New York. [126] [127]
$71.1$35.2 Portrait of a Halberdier Pontormo (Jacopo Carucci) (Italian, Florentine) - Portrait of a Halberdier (Francesco Guardi%3F) - Google Art Project.jpg Pontormo 1537May 31, 19895 Chauncey Stillman Getty Museum Christie's, New York
$71.2$67.4Buste de femme
(Femme à la résille)
Pablo Picasso1938May 11, 2015 Steve Wynn Joseph Lau [128] Christie's, New York [26]
$70.1$66.3 L’Allée des Alyscamps Van Gogh - Les Alyscamps, Allee in Arles1.jpeg Vincent van Gogh1888May 5, 2015Sotheby's, New York [129]
$70.1$66.2 Untitled Mark Rothko1952May 13, 2014Private CollectionAnonymousChristie's, New York [86]
Zhichuan Resettlement [130] ZhichuanResettlement.jpg Wang Meng 1350June 4, 2011Beijing Poly Auction
$69.2$66.3Untitled XXVWillem de Kooning1977November 15, 2016Christie's, New York [131]
$68.9$65.1 Jeanne (Spring) Edouard Manet - Jeanne (Spring).jpg Édouard Manet 1881November 5, 2014 Oliver Hazard Payne heirs [132] Getty Museum Christie's, New York [133]
$68.9$68.9Woman as LandscapeWillem de Kooning1955November 13, 2018Barney A. Ebsworth estateChristie's, New York [83]
$68.7$61.7 1949-A-No.1 Clyfford Still 1949November 9, 2011 City and County of Denver Sotheby's, New York [134]

See also


  1. The Wikipedia template uses a yearly average inflation. Using monthly averages gives slightly different numbers, most significantly for paintings sold early or late in a year with significant inflation.
  2. Badr bin Abdullah allegedly bought Salvador Mundi on behalf of the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture & Tourism [12] , but it has since been posited that he may have been a stand-in bidder for Saudi Arabian crown prince Mohammed bin Salman. [13]
  3. Exact price (even the currency of sale) is not known, with estimates from $250 million to even $300 million
  4. Within weeks after a private viewing in Vienna in September 2012, Rybolovlev agreed to pay $183.8 million via his dealer Bouvier. At the same time, Bouvier was negotiating and eventually succeeded to buy the painting for $112 million from Ursula Ucicky, widow of Gustav Ucicky (the illegitimate son of Gustav Klimt and one of his models). Ucicky shared half with the heirs of the Jewish family from whom the painting had been seized in 1939. After The Bouvier Affair unfolded, Rybolovlev resold the painting for $170 million in November 2015. [21] [22]
  5. Some fear existed, that Portrait of Dr. Gachet had been cremated with the owner in 1996, but Gachet's portrait was privately resold to Wolfgang Flöttl in 1997 or 1998 for $65-$90 million through Sotheby’s. Before 2007, Flöttl had sold it for $100 million to an unknown buyer. [36] [37]
  6. Oprah Winfrey had bought the painting in November 2006 at Christie's for nearly $88 million. At that time this was the 4th highest (unadjusted) price at auction and 10th highest price on this list.
  7. The triptych had probably been reassembled by the Italian collector Francesco De Simone Niquesa, but were resold to a person in the US before 2013 [41] [42]
  8. This is the small version of the painting; the large version is at the Musée d'Orsay.
  9. Privately resold for ca. $50 million through Sotheby’s in 1997. [37]
  10. One of two pastel versions; another two painted versions (and lithography) exist, all created by Munch.
  11. Rybolovlev resold Gauguin's Otahi before 2017 for less than $50 million. [49]
  12. This stands as the most expensive painting by a living artist.
  13. The paintings transferred to the dealers include a late Monet entitled Corona (Water Lilies) from around 1920; Renoir's Reclining Nude of 1902; Kandinsky's Autumn Landscape, Murnau from 1908, and Picasso's Striped Bodice from September 1943.
  14. Alan Bond could not pay off the painting, and Irises was resold (probably for somewhat less) to the Getty Museum.
  15. Price excludes sales commission and other costs.
  16. Exact date of sale is not known.
  17. Later in 2002, Thomson donated his private collection, including the Rubens, to the Art Gallery of Ontario [71]
  18. Annenberg subsequently donated it to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
  19. Rybolovlev resold Te Fare in February 2017 at Christie's in London for $25 million. [77]
  20. Steve Wynn, who bid on the painting at auction, privately acquired the work several months later from the unidentified buyer for an undisclosed, supposedly lower price. Kenneth Griffin acquired it in 2004 from Wynn. [84]
  21. The Nahmad family bought Suprematist Composition in 2008 at Sotheby's, New York, for $60,002,500 ($70 million in 2018 dollars) from the heirs of Kazimir Malevich. [94] [95] [96]
  22. Usually estimated at "over €50 M" or "between 50 and 60 million Euros". On July 12, 2011, $75M was equivalent to €53M.
  23. Re-sold for £12m to Stavros Niarchos in 1993.
  24. A Belgian banker and collector who bought it in 1939 for $18,000. His was the last name on the 1988 provenance list; painting came from "a private collection in Arizona"
  25. Son of Daniel (conductor & cellist) and Eleanore Saidenberg who were Picasso's New York dealers from 1955 to 1973. [113]
  26. On Oct. 7, 2005, The New York Times reported that Steven Cohen bought van Gogh's "Peasant Woman Against a Background of Wheat" and Gauguin's "Bathers" (1903) from Steve Wynn for approximately $110 million, [117] though guesses range from $100-150 million. One or both of the paintings may thus occur higher on this list.

Related Research Articles

Christies British auction house

Christie's is a British auction house. It was founded in 1766 by James Christie. Its main premises are on King Street, St James's, in London and in the Rockefeller Center in New York City. The company is owned by Groupe Artémis, the holding company of François-Henri Pinault. Sales in 2018 totalled £5.3 billion. In 2017 the Salvator Mundi was sold for $450.3 million at Christie's, and which at that time was the highest price ever paid for a single painting at an auction. In 2018 the Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller realised the highest total for a Private Collection and became the most significant charitable auction ever, realising $835.1 million.

Peter Doig Scottish painter

Peter Doig is a Scottish painter. One of the most renowned living figurative painters, he has settled in Trinidad since 2002. In 2007, his painting White Canoe sold at Sotheby's for $11.3 million, then an auction record for a living European artist. In February 2013, his painting, The Architect's Home in the Ravine, sold for $12 million at a London auction. Art critic Jonathan Jones said about him: "Amid all the nonsense, impostors, rhetorical bullshit and sheer trash that pass for art in the 21st century, Doig is a jewel of genuine imagination, sincere work and humble creativity."

Sotheby's is a British-founded American multinational corporation headquartered in New York City. One of the world's largest brokers of fine and decorative art, jewelry, real estate, and collectibles, Sotheby's operation is divided into three segments: auction, finance, and dealer. The company's services range from corporate art services to private sales. It is named after one of its cofounders, John Sotheby.

<i>Water Lilies</i> (Monet series) series of approximately 250 paintings by Claude Monet

Water Lilies is a series of approximately 250 oil paintings by French Impressionist Claude Monet (1840–1926). The paintings depict his flower garden at his home in Giverny, and were the main focus of his artistic production during the last thirty years of his life. Many of the works were painted while Monet suffered from cataracts.

Harry Bakwin was a New York pediatrician, and also a Professor of Pediatrics at New York University. is an art market website. It is operated by Artnet Worldwide Corporation, which has headquarters in New York City, in the United States, and is owned by Artnet AG, a German publicly traded company based in Berlin that is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The company increased revenues by 24.3% to 17.3 million EUR in 2015 compared with a year before.

In auctions, the buyer's premium is a percentage additional charge on the hammer price of the lot that must be paid by the winner. It is charged by the auctioneer as a remuneration, normally in addition to the seller's commission, which had always been charged by auction houses to sellers. The buyer's premium typically goes directly to the auction house and not to the seller.

Victor Wendell Ganz (1913–1987) was an American business owner and art collector. He was the president of D. Lisner & Company, a small costume jewelry manufacturer. With limited resources he and his wife Sally Wile-Ganz built one of the most important collections of contemporary art in the 20th century. They became known for their ability to choose art, as "collectors who never made a mistake". Their collection was sold after their deaths in record-setting auctions.

<i>Portrait of Angel Fernández de Soto</i> portrait by Pablo Picasso

Portrait of Angel Fernández de Soto is a portrait by Spanish artist Pablo Picasso completed in 1903 during his Blue Period. The oil painting depicts Picasso's friend and fellow painter, Angel Fernandez de Soto, in a bar with a glass of absinthe. The painting was previously owned by musical theatre composer Andrew Lloyd Webber. On 23 June 2010, the painting was sold at auction for £34.7 million.

The European Fine Art Fair art fair

The European Fine Art Fair is an annual art, antiques and design fair, organized by The European Fine Art Foundation in the MECC in Maastricht, Netherlands. It was first held in 1988. The 10-day fair attracts about 75,000 visitors and is considered one of the world's leading art fairs.

<i>Nude, Green Leaves and Bust</i> painting by Pablo Picasso

Nude, Green Leaves and Bust is a 1932 painting by Pablo Picasso, featuring his mistress Marie-Thérèse Walter.

<i>Grande tête mince</i> sculpture by Alberto Giacometti

Grande tête mince is a bronze sculpture by Alberto Giacometti. The work was conceived in 1954 and cast the following year. Auctioned in 2010, Grande tête mince became one of the most valuable sculptures ever sold when it fetched $53.3 million.

<i>Tete de femme</i> (<i>Dora Maar</i>) sculpture by Pablo Picasso

Tete de femme is a plaster-modelled, bronze-cast sculpture by Pablo Picasso. Dora Maar, Picasso's lover at the time, was the subject of the work which was originally conceived in 1941. Four copies of the bust were cast in the 1950s, several years after the relationship ended.

<i>Les Femmes dAlger</i> painting series by Pablo Picasso

Les Femmes d'Alger is a series of 15 paintings and numerous drawings by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. The series, created in 1954–1955, was inspired by Eugène Delacroix's 1834 painting The Women of Algiers in their Apartment. The series is one of several painted by Picasso in tribute to artists that he admired.

<i>La Gommeuse</i> painting by Pablo Picasso

La Gommeuse[la ɡɔmøz] is a 1901 oil on canvas painting by the Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. It dates from his so-called Blue period and is noted for its caricature of Picasso's friend Pere Mañach painted on the reverse. It was offered for sale ex the William I. Koch collection at a Sotheby's, New York, auction on 5 November 2015. The painting realized $67.5 million at the sale, a record for a Blue period Picasso and placing the painting among the most expensive ever sold.

<i>Nu couché</i> painting by Amedeo Modigliani

Nu couché is a 1917 oil on canvas painting by the Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani. It is one of his most widely reproduced and exhibited paintings.

<i>Portrait of Paulette Jourdain</i> painting by Amedeo Modigliani

Portrait of Paulette Jourdain is a 1919 oil painting by Italian painter Amedeo Modigliani. It was in the personal collection of A. Alfred Taubman. The painting was sold at auction by Sotheby's in November 2015 for $42.8 million. The painting depicts Pauline Jourdain, who moved from Concarneau in Brittany to Paris in 1919 as a teenager. One of Modigliani's largest works, it shows Cubist influences and references the Mona Lisa.


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