Doing Well: Claude Monet’s ‘Meules’ Becomes the Most Valuable Impressionist Painting After Selling for $110.7 Million - Arts & Culture

May was a great month for art.

A painting by Claude Monet has been auctioned for $110.7 million—a new global record for the artist and now the ninth-most expensive work sold at auction, according to Sotheby’s. The piece is also the first impressionist painting that fetched over $100 million. 

In total, the Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern evening sale in New York fetched a total of $349.9 million in sales (well over its presale expectations of $253.6 million). 

READ ALSO: Pay It Forward: A Picasso Formerly Owned By Sean Connery Sells For $22.3M

Monet’s Meules (1890) / Photo from Sothebys.com

Before the Monet painting, titled Meules, went up for bids, it was sold for only $2.5 million at an auction in 1986. 

Prior to Meules ever going up for sale, the artist’s family had possession of the 1890 piece for nearly a century. 

Doing well

May was a great month for historically significant art. On May 10, Christie’s sold Andy Warhol’s painting of Marilyn Monroe titled Shot Sage Blue Marilyn for a record $195 million, making it the most expensive 20th-century artwork to sell at auction.

More recently, on May 26, D Homme Dans un cadre, a piece by Pablo Picasso, sold at a Christie’s Hong Kong sale for $22.3 million. Although the price tag didn’t break records, the piece was formerly owned by the late James Bond actor Sean Connery. 

The sale proceeds will benefit foundations in Scotland and the Bahamas—where Connery and his wife, Micheline, lived for over 30 years.

More Monet works also did well in a separate Sotheby’s evening sale on May 12. The modern art sale offered his landscape pieces titled Le Grand Canal et Santa Maria della Salute from 190 ($188.4 million), Les Arceaux de roses, and Giverny (both paintings’ costs are estimated from $20 to $30 million). 

Banner photo from from Sothebys.com

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