Published On: Fri, Mar 27th, 2015

Women of Algiers by Pablo Picasso valued at 140 million dollars

Women of Algiers

Picasso’s painting Women of Algiers Version ‘O’ is being put up for auction at Christie’s.

Picasso’s masterpiece, the “Women of Algiers (Version O)” painted in 1950s will be auctioned on May 11 at Christie’s and so far it is valued at 140 million dollars.

The central figure of this painting is Picasso’s muse and his second wife, Jacqueline Roque, represented colorfully in the foreground amid a jumble of nudes. Inspired by Eugen Delacroix’s “Women of Algiers in their apartments” this oil on canvas painting is one of fifteen work series painted between 1954 and 1955.

Pre-estimate value is already near the record of the auction house which is held by Francis Bacon’s triptych “Three Studies of Lucian Freud” that was sold for 142.4 million dollars in 2013.

The identity of the seller is still unknown, but it’s said that the piece was acquired in 1997 when all 15 pieces of the series were sold, also at Christie’s. Previous owners were Victor and Sally Ganz and this specific painting was then sold for 31.9 million.

Oliver Camu, Deputy Chairman of impressionist and modern arts at Christie’s said “this is the single most important painting by Picasso to remain in private hands.”

Alongside with “Women of Algiers (Version O) the auction house will offer two dozen of other blue chip works created between 1902 and the end of the 20th century in a stand-alone sale called “Looking Forward to the Past”.

This work was in retrospective of many museums in 1950s and 1960s, more recent exhibitions were held in the Louvre, the Tate Britain and National Gallery of London.

Pablo Picasso is remembered as one of the most influential artists of modern time, a painter, sculptor, poet, playwrighter and most importantly the father of Cubism. He spent most of his adult life in France where he gained fame, wealth and honor to work with some of the greatest artists that ever lived.

Christie’s auction house set the record for the highest amount raised for any work of Pablo Picasso in May 2010 for his piece “Nude, Green Leaves and Bust” painted in 1932. The painting was inspired by Marie-Therese Walter, Picasso’s mistress during that period. That painting was sold for 106.5 million dollars.

The new auction has surely attracted a lot of attention already, but whether it exceeds current expectations is yet to be seen on May 11. It is expected to be one of the most visited auctions ever held in Christie’s auction house history.

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