One of Marcel Duchamp’s reproductions of Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, on to which he pencilled a beard and moustache, has sold for €632,500 ($750,000) at Sotheby’s in Paris.
It was part of the sale of a collection of surrealist works owned by American Arthur Brandt, with 110 pieces fetching €3.9 million, including commission.
However, some standout pieces, including a work by Francis Picabia, which was estimated at €700,000, did not find a buyer.
Duchamp’s version of the Mona Lisa was one of nine works in the sale by the French artist, who is seen as the father of conceptual art.
The Mona Lisa works are entitled L.H.O.O.Q, which in French sounds like the phrase “elle a chaud au cul”, roughly translated as “she’s horny”. It had a presale estimate of €400,000 to €600,000.
The version that sold late on Saturday was created in 1964 after the original 1919 so-called “ready made” piece.
The other Duchamp pieces on offer at the auction included Boite-en-valise or Box in a Suitcase, which beat its presale estimate of €180,000 to €250,000, selling for €319,500.
The work is a portable museum featuring 68 of the artist’s most famous works, reproduced or miniaturised. Seven distinct versions were made in limited edition between 1941 and 1966.
A painting by Swiss artist Kurt Seligmann called Buste d’homme, estimated at €60,000 to €80,000, was sold for €181,250, “not far from a world record for the artist”, according to Sotheby’s. Read more