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

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. 

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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). 

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