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Look inside the $1 billion sale of Paul Allen’s art collection

On Wednesday evening, Christie’s announced highlights from the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s estate, whose roughly 150 artworks are anticipated to bring in more than $1 billion. Allen died in 2018.

September 23, 2022 / 11:47 AM IST
Paul Allen

Paul Allen


The details of what could be the most expensive single-owner auction in history are starting to take shape.

On Wednesday evening, Christie’s announced highlights from the late Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s estate, whose roughly 150 artworks are anticipated to bring in more than $1 billion. Allen died in 2018.

Topping the list is a Cézanne landscape which carries an estimate “in excess of” $120 million. A Van Gogh landscape and a Seurat interior are both estimated at $100 million. Together, estimates for the top 10 paintings announced by the auction house total $765 million.

The sale, whose proceeds will go to charity, will possibly be the most extreme test of the art market ever, but it comes at a time of deep uncertainty in the the global financial markets. The quality and rarity of Allen’s artworks are unquestionable; the prices, however, are steep enough to give even billionaires pause.

The auction will take place in New York in two parts—an evening sale on November 9, and a morning sale on November 10. Check out some of the highlights and estimates (all of which are listed “in excess of”) below.

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$120 Million for ​​La montagne Sainte-Victoire (1888-1890) by Paul Cézanne
$100 Million for Verger avec Cyprès (1888) by Vincent Van Gogh
$100 Million for Les Poseuses, Ensemble (Petite version) (1888) by Georges Seurat
$90 Million for Birch Forest (1903) by Gustav Klimt
$90 Million for Maternité II (1899) by Paul Gauguin
$75 Million for Large Interior, W11 (after Watteau) (1981-1983) by Lucian Freud
$60 Million for Waterloo Bridge, Soleil Voilé (1899-1903) by Claude Monet
$50 Million for Le Grand Canal à Venise (1874) by Edouard Manet
$50 Million for Small False Start (1960) by Jasper Johns
$28 Million for Concarneau, calme du matin (Opus no. 219, larghetto) (1891) by Paul Signac$25 Million for Three Studies for Self-Portrait (1979) by Francis Bacon
Bloomberg
first published: Sep 23, 2022 11:47 am
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