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$385 Million Art Sale Paints Pricier Market Picture
CNBC.com | May 17, 2007 | 06:48 PM EDT

Christie’s auction house sold $385 million worth of art Wednesday – the second highest total in art auctioning history. ARTnews editor Eileen Kinsella and Winkleman Gallery owner Edward Winkleman joined “Power Lunch” to discuss the high price of art – and what the auction means for the market.

“Green Car Crash,” an Andy Warhol painting, started at $20 million. Two bidders battled for it in million and half-million dollar increments – until a third person, “a well-known Manhattan dealer, jumped into the fray and threw everyone for a loop,” said Kinsella. The bid ended when an unknown person bid $71.4 million.

Kinsella said the auction vaulted Warhol into a different price bracket altogether: his previous record was $17.4 million.

Winkleman compared the pricey Warhol paintings to Pablo Picasso’s pieces, at least in market value: “The best Picassos have been picked over already, and collectors who want a serious high-quality work of art have to move on and start working with the contemporary market,” he explained.

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