Christie’s New York recently launched the first installment of a three-day auction centering upon David Rockefeller’s premier private art collection. The Tuesday night event amassed a record-breaking $646 million USD in sales with 44 lots sold. The highlight of the auction is a rose period portrait by Pablo Picasso dubbed Young Girl with a Flower Basket (1905). The painting sold for a whopping $115.1 million USD, topping Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Untitled (1982) skull painting which sold for $110.5 million USD last year and making it the second most expensive Picasso painting to ever sell at an auction.
Accompanying the Picasso were paintings by Monet and Matisse that also hit the record books. Monet’s Water Lilies in Bloom (1914-17) sold for an impressive $84.6 million USD and Matisse’s Odalisque reclining with magnolias garnered $80.7 million USD. Proceeds from the sale of the works will be donated to charities supported by David and Peggy Rockefeller.