The difference between art as objects of beauty and art as a commodity are blurred at times.
Francis Bacon’s painting, The Studies of Lucian Freud, established a new-high price record for a painting sold at auction, selling for $142 million, at an auction recently held by Christie’s.
Well, it is a triptych and the canvas is around 72 inches tall. So, it is three works in one piece. Bacon is considered by many to be the greatest artist of the 20th century by members of the “serious” art community.
Slate reports Roman Abramovich paid $86.3 million for another tall, triptych painting by Francis Bacon, Triptych 1976. That work was the previous record holder for achieving the highest price of a piece of contemporary art sold at an auction.
The evening had one particularly pricey bump: “Orange, Red, Yellow,” an abstract Rothko in dense tones from 1956, was expected to fetch $35 million. It was being sold by Heinz Eppler, a philanthropist and collector from New York and Palm Beach, Calif. There were no bids for the painting, which failed to sell. A small triangle by the lot number indicated that Sotheby’s had a financial interest in the painting.