The last privately-owned Da Vinci painting sold at record- breaking auction

Salvador Mundi Leonardo Da Vinci
Salvador Mundi Leonardo Da Vinci

Leonardo Da Vinci is one of the most revered artists of all time, even though merely defining him an artist would not do justice to the incredibly diverse interests of this unique figure. Da Vinci was a thinker, a scientist, a painter, an inventor and a lot more. His heritage has left a deep mark in history, and it is not surprising that the works he left us are worth millions of dollars.

Recently, a long-lost masterpiece by the artist sold for the staggering sum of $450.3 million. The auction was hosted by Christie’s, and it made headlines. The “Salvador Mundi” is the most expensive painting ever sold in the history of art-related auctions, beating the previous record holder, “Les Femmes d’Alger” by Pablo Picasso.

According to press reports, the bidding process was relatively short, but very exciting nonetheless. Four potential buyers were involved in the event. The initial price, set at $100 million, suddenly spiked up rapidly and became too much for two of the buyers. They dropped out when the painting reached upwards of $300 million.

Ultimately, the last two contenders battered the price until it reached an outstanding value. The winner’s identity is unknown, but we could certainly say that he or she must be a dedicated art collector, willing to pay such an incredible sum for an artistic masterpiece.

There are many reasons why this 500-year old painting is so valuable. Not to mention its history and the highly recognized character of Leonardo Da Vinci, its rarity also matters: this is only one of 16 known surviving canvases by the artist, embodying the spirit of the Renaissance age. It’s crazy to think that such a valuable painting was believed to be lost for a long time; it resurfaced in 2005. Erroneously credited to one of Da Vinci’s pupils, the picture was sold by its owner in 1958, for a measly 45 pounds, which is about $125 (US dollars).

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