For art market aficionados, it’s hard to imagine 2017 being remembered as anything other than “that time when someone bought a painting for $450 million.” The sale of Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi for nearly half a billion dollars, despite some murmurs about its authenticity and hefty restoration, set a new global record. It came just a few months after Japanese collector Yusaku Maezawa spent $110.4 million (all prices include fees unless otherwise noted) on a painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat, unseating Andy Warhol as the most expensive American artist at auction.
But 2017 saw a LOT of records for sales and auction in the art world.
1. Leonardo da Vinci, Salvator Mundi (c. 1500), sold for $450 million
2. Qi Baishi, Twelve Landscape Screens (1925), sold for $140.8 million
3. Jean-Michel Basquiat, Untitled (1982), sold for $110.4 million
4. Vincent van Gogh, Laboureur dans un champ(1889), sold for $81.3 million
5. Fernand Léger, Contraste de formes (1913), sold for $70 million
6. Andy Warhol, Sixty Last Suppers (1986), sold for $60.8 million
7. Gustav Klimt, Bauerngarten (1907), sold for $59.3 million
8. Constantin Brancusi, La muse endormie(1913), sold for $57.3 million
9. Cy Twombly, Leda and the Swan (1962), sold for $52.8 million
10. Francis Bacon, Three Studies for a Portrait of George Dyer (1963), sold for $51.7 million
Photo cred: Artsy.com