Francis Bacon’s “Three Studies of Lucian Freud” has been sold for a whopping $142 million at Christie’s Tuesday evening sale of post-war and contemporary art and thus become the most expensive work of art ever sold at auction. Bacon’s triptych painting from 1969 sold after six minutes of fierce bidding, easily surpassing the previous record of $119.9 million set in May 2012 for Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.”
The winning bidder chose to remain anonymous. A few minutes later Jeff Koons’ Balloon Dog Sculpture fetched $58.4 million, an auction record for a living artist, while the third-priciest lot was a Andy Warhol’s Coca-Cola (3) Painting that went for $57.3 million.
The New York event achieved the highest auction total in art market history with $691 million in sales.
The previous record for Bacon’s artwork sold at auction was the British artist’s 1976 “Triptych”, which was sold for $86 million in 2008.