Art Basel Update: Lucian Freud Painting Sells for $12 Million to Anonymous Buyer at Art Basel

June 6th, 2008

Visitors Outside Art Basel in Switzerland via

Freud Painting Sells for $12 Million [Bloomberg]
New Freud Paintings Enter the Market [Times Online, UK]
Roman à Clef [artforum]

The painting, titled Girl in Attic Doorway and dating from the mid 1990s, was reserved during much of the fair’s preview yesterday. The work sold today via Freud’s international agent, Acquavella Galleries, for $12 million to a buyer who wished to remain anonymous. This sale follows Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich’s record-breaking purchase of Freud’s Benefits Supervisor Sleeping for $33.6 million at Christie’s last month, making the British painter “the world’s most expensive living artist.”

Sources indicate Abramovich, as well as Sheikh Saud Al-Thani, cousin of the emir of Qatar, and Hollywood actor Brad Pitt among those who visited the Acquavella booth or attended the preview before the sale. This painting is part of a variety of new works by the artist to enter the market, continually raising the price of contemporary art and attracting international buyers.