Picasso Sets Auction Record, Going for $179 Million

Picasso Sets Auction Record, Going for $179 Million

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Tara Bellucci
Jun 21, 2015
(Image credit: Christie's)

Last month, a new world record was set: Picasso's "Women of Algiers (Version O)" sold for $179.4 million. The former record was $142.4 million for Francis Bacon's "Three Studies of Lucian Freud" in 2013.

Completed in 1955, Version O is the culmination of a series of works Picasso painted to honor his friend, Henri Matisse.

After 11 minutes of active bidding, the work went for $20 million over Christie's initial estimate of $140 million (the final sale price includes the hammer price of $160 million plus a buyer's fee).

Some believe the work isn't worthy of its price, citing that better art came from Picasso's Cubist and Blue periods. The Independent suggests that the price has more to do with the Picasso Foundation's PR muscle rather than its value as a great work of art.

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