La Pintura Escandaloso: Modigliani Nude Could Bring Christie’s $100 million

(CNN Money) – Christie’s said the painting “caused a scandal” when Modigliani exhibited it nearly 100 years ago at his “first and only” one-man show in Paris.

Amedeo-Modigliani-Photo
Amedeo Modigliani

“Outraged by the content of the show — which had caused a crowd to form outside the gallery window where one of Modigliani’s nudes was openly on display — the police demanded the immediate closure of the exhibition,” said Christie’s.

Modigliani was an Italian libertine who died poor, at age 35, but not before he painted a lot of nudes.

Christie’s broke a record when it sold a Picasso for $179 million in May. The auction house had expected to get $140 million for the painting, “Les femmes d’Alger.”

The prior record was $142 million for Francis Bacon’s “Three Studies of Lucian Freud,” which was sold in 2013. The current record for a Modigliani is a sculpture that sold for $70.7 million last year.

Christie’s is now hoping to have another  putting the Modigliani on the auction block November 9 in New York. The painting,“Reclining Nude,” dates from 1917 and 1918, the final years of World War I.

And it just might get it, considering the nine-digit prices that Modern Art masterpieces have been getting.

Modigliani’s Doomed Lover Portrait Tops $214 Million Sale

“Jeanne Hebuterne (au Chapeau)” (1919) by Amedeo Modigliani, a painting of the artist’s common-law wife. It was sold in a 78-lot auction of Impressionist and modern works at Christie’s International in London on Feb. 6. The price was 26.9 million pounds ($42.1 million). Source: Christie’s Images Ltd. 2013 via Bloomberg

Christie’s hopes to get $100 million for a century-old nude by the famous bohemian painter Amedeo Modigliani.

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