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    Thursday, February 10th, 2011

    Dali's Portrait de Paul Eluard (click on image to enlarge)

    Portrait de Paul Eluard – a masterpiece by Salvador Dali – soared above its pre-sale estimate of £3.5-5 million to sell to an anonymous bidder on the phone for £13,481,250/$21,688,635 at Sotheby’s in London on February 10.

    This is a record for any Surrealist work of art at auction.   This price triples the record established for the artist at Christie’s on the previous evening in London.  It also stands a new record price for any Surrealist work of art sold at auction.

    The single owner sale of Modern and Contemporary Art, Looking Closely: A Private Collection brought a well above estimate total of £93.5 million.  This outstanding result of £93,520,600 / $150,455,941 / €110,307,368 was achieved against an estimate of £39,298,000-54,987,000.

    The top lot of the night was Francis Bacon’s  triptych Three Studies for a Portrait of Lucian Freud.

    The sale, which was 100% sold, set records for Dali, Julio González, Jean Fautrier and Wols. Wols’s Sans Titre (1946-1947) is one of only 40 works to have been created by an artist who  became a leading figure in art in Post-War Europe. It went for  £2,617,250, 17 times its pre-sale high estimate.

    See posts for February 5 and February 10.