The most expensive sculptures



The rise in prices for works of art did not leave sculpture aside. For a long time, this direction lagged far behind in the prices of constantly expensive paintings. However, after the crisis, people again rushed the buyer of the creation of the masters, this time the sculpture made a jerk, overtaking the pace of its competitor.

Alberto Giacometti can be considered the record holder among the most expensive sculptors, in just a few years his work has grown in price by 4 times. And in 2010 the Swiss became the author of the most expensive sculpture in the world. The new record is equal to 104 million dollars, beating the predecessor three times. Of all the arts at auctions, more was paid only for the painting by Picasso. But not only the works of Giacometti are valued, as will be discussed below. Alberto Giacometti, “Walking Man I”, 1961.

This sculpture was sold in 2010 at the auction of Sotheby’s for a record 104,327 million dollars. The figure of a walking man has a height of 183 cm. This is only the first version of the sculptor’s works on this subject. It is “Walking Man I” is considered the most important creation of the master. Giacometti created a sculpture in 1961 for the city square. That’s why the work went out quite high – with human growth. Like other creations of Giacometti, his modernism is present here. The figure is created with minimal elaboration of details, here the form itself is much more important. The sculpture depicts a lonely and fragile pedestrian. The work became known after the Venice Art Exhibition in 1962. “Walking Rights” was called a modest image of man, but a powerful symbol of humanity. After all, the figure seems to go against the wind. Sculpture is considered one of the most iconic works in modernity, it is even depicted on a Swiss bank note of 100 francs. Damien Hirst, “For the Love of the Lord,” 2007.

This work is known more as the “Diamond Skull”. It is a human head bone, made of platinum and inlaid with diamonds. The author is the famous and already become a cult artist of the English artist Damien Hirst. His sculpture is the most expensive creation of art among all living creators today. A skull 20 cm high is a small copy of a 35-year-old resident of Europe, who lived in the 18th-19th centuries. The surface of the sculpture is studded with 8601 diamonds with a total weight of 1106 carats. In the center of the skull is a large pink diamond. The sculptor himself worked at a cost of 1 million British pounds. For the first time this masterpiece was shown to the public in 2007 in the London gallery “White Cube”. In the same year, the sculpture was bought out for the purpose of investing funds by the consortium from the creator himself, his manager Frank Dunphy and Ukrainian businessman Victor Pinchuk for $ 100 million.


The most expensive sculptures

Amedeo Modigliani, “The Head”, 1910-1912.

This work was sold at Christie’s auction in 2010 for 59.5 million dollars. The height of the sculpture is about 65 cm, the master worked over it for several years. As a result, she became the most expensive of his work. Surprisingly, Modigliani is better known as an artist. In his paintings, women are depicted with elongated necks and heads. The head was shown to the public in 1912, becoming a typical part of the work of Modigliani. It has the same oval face and almond-shaped eyes, a small mouth and a long thin nose, as in the portraits. Since 1927, “Head” was in the private collection of Gaston Levy, the founder of a supermarket chain. Sculpture was estimated at about 7 million, but at an auction its price rose unexpectedly. It is interesting that there are bronze castings of such heads, but they cost tens of thousands. In this case, the high price is determined by the material – the master himself worked on the stone.

The most expensive sculptures

Unknown author, “Lioness of Guennol”, about 3000-2800 BC. e.

Not only modern masters, but also ancient geniuses are valued. In 2007, this sculpture was sold at an auction Sotheby’s for 57 million dollars.And in this case, the price exceeded the estimated 3-4 times. As a result, this subject of ancient art is the most expensive in the world. The statuette is small, only 8 cm high. It was created by someone in Mesopotamia 5 thousand years ago. It was created at a time when people invented money, a wheel, they began to build big cities. The statuette was then worn around the neck. And found this item in Iraq, near Baghdad. Since 1948, it was kept by a private American collector, Alistair Martin, until he decided to sell it. The previous owner decided to send all the proceeds to charity. Alberto Giacometti, Diego’s Big Head, 1954.

Another work by the famous Swiss in 2010 was valued at Christie’s at 53.3 million dollars. And in this case the initial price was significantly exceeded. The sculpture depicts Giacometti’s constant model throughout his life – his brother Diego. Like the rest of the sculptor’s work, this one is cast in bronze. Its frozen forms have forever preserved for the descendants of the touch of fingers the genius and his imprints. This is the technique Giacometti – sign and incompleteness, which symbolizes the imperfection of our world and the constant desire of man to stay in search. This sculpture the master cast for placement on one of the squares of New York. Although the work on it Giacometti and did not have time to finish because of death, it is still appreciated among collectors.

The most expensive sculptures

Henri Matisse, “Naked female figure from the back of IV”, 1930.

This work also has a serial number. This is the fourth version of the relief “Standing back to the viewer,” and the most memorable and grandiose. 12 sculptures were taken from the sculpture, the best samples are in the world’s leading museums. In private ownership, there were only two copies, one of which went on sale. At auction Christie’s for sculpture in 2010, gave 48.8 million dollars. The Matisse series of four bronze reliefs in full growth is considered the greatest phenomenon in the modernism of the last century. Matisse repeatedly made changes in “Standing back to the viewer.” Each new interpretation of it changed the position of the figure, the surface. Thus, the sculptor tried to achieve the ideal image. The fourth attempt took place two decades after the first. Constantine Brancusi, Madam LR., 1918.

Sculptor Konstantin Brancusi from Romania was able to create his own original style – a sculptural abstraction. He became the first to develop a new direction. As a result, creativity Brancusi had a great influence on the whole of modern sculpture. The most famous work of the master was sold in 2009 for 37.1 million dollars. At auction, Christie’s then sold a collection of art objects Yves Saint Laurent. Brancusi used fluid stylized contours, strengthening laconism and geometric abstraction of forms. Wooden sculpture, named after some Madame LR, is devoid of a rich emotional background, which is usually inherent in works of art. Henry Moore, “Reclining figure: Festival,” 1951.

Quite recently, in 2012, Christie’s paid $ 30.1 million for this work. The sculptor himself called the “Reclining figure” one of his three best creations. The work is an openworking half-lying figure of a woman. Despite the fragility, its shape looks monolithic. Henry Moore received an order for her cast for the British Festival in 1951. By that time, the sculptor already owned the prize of the Venetian exhibition, being the most famous English contemporary sculptor. The festival marked the centennial of the 1851 World Exhibition, where it was planned to demonstrate the achievements of modern Britain and its aspiration for modernism. Pablo Picasso, “The Head of a Woman, Dora Maar”, 1941.

In 2007, Picasso’s sculpture, sold at Sotheby’s auction for $ 29.1 million, became the most expensive in the world. True, she did not wear such a title for long.Beloved master, French artist and photographer Dora Maar, took a special place in his work. Picasso, in addition to her paintings, also cast the image of a woman in bronze. Konstantin Brancusi, “The Bird in Space”, 1922-1923.

Brancusi paid a lot of attention to birds, he collected 27 pieces – a whole series. These creatures differ in shape and size. The best work of the critics is “Bird in space.” In 2005, Christie’s auction was able to raise $ 27.4 million for it. This sculpture differs from its predecessors in that the traditional zigzag tail and beak turned into two spindle tips. The bird itself became a universal generalized form. Given the cost of work, the form can be considered ideal. In addition, even an ingot of gold in the form of such a spindle would have been cheaper. Which once again emphasizes the strength and value of art. Initially, the work was owned by the Parisian Leoni Rica, a fan of art and the owner of a glamorous salon. But after the breakup of the hostess with her husband, “Bird” visited first in a bank vault, and then entered the auction. It is believed that the “Bird in Space” was bought into joint possession by three American dealers.



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