Picassos, a Gaugin and a Paul Klee have all fetched top prices at the start of a two-day auction of the private collection of late Swiss art dealer Ernst Beyeler.
Picasso’s Femme Assise, robe bleue was sold for £17.9 million (SFr24.6 million), four times its lower estimate, at Christie’s in London on Tuesday night.
Around 40 pieces went under the hammer, clocking up a total of $44.6 million. Another 50 works were being auctioned on Wednesday night, including ceramics by Picasso.
Paul Klee’s Tänzerin sold for $4.1 million, a world record for the Swiss artist at auction. Another Picasso, Buste de Françoise went for £10.6 million, slightly above its top estimate.
Le Vallon by Gaugin sold for £6.4 million and Renoir’s La source (nu allongé) for $5 million.
Not all works sold, however. Claude Monet’s Nymphéas did not go for its reserve of SFr23 million.
Smaller pieces are also up, providing a more intimate picture of the life of Beyeler and his wife Hildy. The proceeds will benefit the Beyeler Foundation museum near Basel.
swissinfo.ch and agencies