Updated: Jan 4, 2020
Below, we have the 10 most expensive pieces of art sold at auction this year. The pieces exclusively sold from Christie’s and Sotheby’s, and almost entirely out of their New York salesrooms.
Full list can be viewed here. Below is my favorite of the 10.
Francis Bacon's Study for a Head, 1952. Auctioned for $50,380,000
Study for a Head sees his holy countenance from a much closer vantage point than the traditional, full-body angle as seen in Velázquez’s portrait. This piece set the record for works from the series, trumping the previous record of $29.7 million achieved by Untitled (Pope) (1954) in 2012. Study for a Head was sold from the collection of Richard E. Lang and Jane Lang Davis, though it was originally bought by Jackson Pollock’s biographer Bernard H. Friedman in 1952, the year the piece was created. In 1952 alone, Bacon made six portraits, and the other five are currently held by Tate Britain and the Yale Center for British Art.