THE BLOG
07/09/2013 10:37 am ET Updated Sep 08, 2013

El Greco Makes Old Master Record at Sotheby's

A masterpiece by El Greco sold at Sotheby's yesterday evening (July 3, 2013) for £9.1 million, a record for a Spanish Old Master and the highest price achieved at London's Old Master sales this week, according to the auction house.

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Courtesy of Sotheby's

"Saint Dominic in Prayer," which dates from approximately 1588, sold for almost double its upper pre-sale estimate of £5 million at Sotheby's evening sale of Old Master & British paintings, which took a total of £35 million.

There were eight records for artists' work on the evening, including pieces by Claude-Joseph Vernet and Rachel Ruysch, which sold for £5.3 million (est. £3-5 million) and £1.7 million (est. £1-1.5 million) respectively.

Of the 47 pieces offered, 78.7% sold by lot, and 90.7% by value.

Alex Bell, worldwide head of Sotheby's Old Master paintings department, said "clients from new markets are collecting Old Masters in new ways...the dialogue between old and new is injecting fresh energy."

A Sotheby's spokeswoman said it was the first time "in living memory" that two masterpieces by El Greco went on sale at the same auction. Another piece by the artist, Christ on the Cross, sold for £3.4million (est: £3-5million).

-Rob Sharp, BLOUIN ARTINFO

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