It is a well know fact that an artist only really gains popularity after his death. Same is the case with Bacon whose painting gather a much larger sum than expected by Sotheby’s auction house. Study for Head of George Dyer, a portrait of Bacon’s lover painted in 1967 four years prior to Bacon’s suicide was expected to fetch a handsome amount of £8 million. However, compared to the prices of his other paintings, this one might be considered to be on the lower side. A record was set by Triptych which sold for a whopping $US86.2 million in a New York auction. Bacon is not the only one to rake in money for his art in this auction. A life-sized maquette of sculptor Antony Gormley’s Angel of the North went for £2.2 million ($4.6 million), whereas its expected winnning bid was between £600,000 ($1.25 million) and £800,000 ($1.66 million). This sculpture replicates the 20-metre-high and 54-metre-wide monument in Gateshead, northwest England which by popular opinion is the most noticeable landmark in England.
Note – Pictured above is Francis Bacon’s self potrait
Sotheby’s and rival auction house Christie’s have managed to gather a combined total of nearly £300 million ($624 million) worth of art. And this figure was achieved in just three days of sale. It only goes to prove the fact that there are scores of art lovers out there. While Sotheby’s have done well for themselves through works of Bacon and Snthony Gormley, Chistie’s has sold £168.4 million ($350.3 million) of impressionist and modern art, and £108.6 million ($225.9 million) of post-war and contemporary works.