Freud work expected to break record at Christie’s in New York

April 28th, 2008

Benefits Supervisor Sleeping via the

Next month, Christie’s will auction in New York the painting “Benefits Supervisor Sleeping” by the British artist Lucian Freud. The work was painted in 1995 when Sue Tilley, the subject of the painting, agreed to pose naked for the artist in exchange for a $40 fee.

“Her pounds could make millions” [NY Times]
“It’s lovely, says benefits supervisor whose portrait is set to sell for £17m” []
“Freud painting ‘will set record” [BBC news]
“Christie’s eyes record with Lucian Freud picture” [Reuters]
Benefits Supervisor Sleeping [Christie's]
Christie’s Announces Postwar Lineup [NY Sun]

Art experts said that the painting could reach $33.5 million at the auction, which would be the most expensive painting by a living artist. The current auction record for a work by a living artist is “Hanging Heart,” by Jeff Koons, which was sold for $23.6m in November 2007. The Hirst skull sold last year would break this record, but this work was purchased by a consortium that included the artist. “Benefits Supervisor Sleeping” will be shown onApril 11, 14 and 15th at Christie’s in London, before being auctioned in New York.