Francis Bacon’s ‘Lucian Freud’ triptych breaks auction price records

Francis Bacon's "Three Studies of Lucian Freud" broke auction records for garnering a price tag of about $142.4 million.
Francis Bacon’s “Three Studies of Lucian Freud” broke auction records for garnering a price tag of about $142.4 million.

A three-panel painting by British artist Francis Bacon broke auction price records Tuesday at Christie’s in New York, garnering the most money --$142.4 million -- of any work ever sold at an auction.

Until now “The Scream” by Edvard Munch held the top spot for highest auction price tag; it sold at Sotheby’s in 2012 for almost $120 million.

The Bacon work, a triptych from 1969 titled “Three Studies of Lucian Freud,” depicts another painter, Lucian Freud, a friend of Bacon’s -- and ultimately an artistic rival -- sitting in three different positions on the same chair. The three panels are awash in bright orange and beige tones.

QUIZ: Guess the high-priced art


There were seven bidders in all. The seller of the Bacon work is an unnamed collector who lives in Rome.

In other sales at the Christie’s auction, Jeff Koons’ sculpture “Balloon Dog (Orange)” sold for $58.4 million, which is a record price for a living artist.


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