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Kahlo work sets auction record for artist

May 13, 2016

A painting by Frida Kahlo depicting two nude women fetched a record sum for the iconic Mexican artist at a Christie's auction in New York.

Kahlo's 'Two Nudes in the Forest (The Land Itself)' - Copyright: Getty Images/AFP/K. Betancur
Image: Getty Images/AFP/K. Betancur

Kahlo's "Two Nudes in the Forest (The Land Itself)" depicts two nudes in a dreamlike setting. It was sold for $8 million (7 million euros) at Christie's sale of impressionist and modern art on Thursday (12.05.2016). It is the highest sum paid yet for any work by the cult Mexican artist - as well as a record for any Latin American artist at an auction.

However, the price barely made the low estimate. The work had been expected to sell for as much as $12 million.

Her previous record had been established 10 years ago, when her painting "Roots" sold for $5.6 million during a Sotheby's auction.

Kahlo (1907-1954) was the first Latin-American artist to cross the million-dollar threshold when her painting "Diego y Yo" went for $1.4 million in 1990.

Her colorful personality and style as well as the limited number of works she produced made her one of the most sought-after Latin American artists.

The painting is slated to appear in the exposition "Paint the Revolution: Mexican Modernism, 1910-1950," which opens in October at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The show will move on to the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City in 2017.

Modigliani and Monet

A total of 51 works were sold in the auction. Amedeo Modigliani's "Young Woman with Rose (Margherita)" (1916) went for $12.76 million. The top lot of the sale was an iconic painting by Claude Monet depicting his beloved water lily pond, which sold for $27 million.

Despite the high sum, the all-time auction record for another water lily painting by Monet is $80.4 million.

eg/db (AP, Reuters, AFP)

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