10 Years of the Season’s Most Expensive Work of Impressionist-Modern Art

Which work took top honors in the past ten rounds of November sales in New York?

Amedeo Modigliani, Nu Assis Sur un Divan (La Belle Romaine), 1917
Alberto Giacometti, L'homme qui Chavire, conceived in 1950, cast in 1951
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Mr. Malevich's painting that sold in 2008 at a Sotheby's Auction for $60,002,500
Kazimir Malevich, Suprematist Composition, 1916
Paul Gauguin, Te Poipoi (Le Matin), 1892
Gustav Klimt, Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer II, 1912
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Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, La blanchisseuse, 1886-1887
Paul Gauguin, Maternité (II), 1899
Gustav Klimt, Landhaus am Attersee, 1914
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Claude Monet, Nymphéas, 1906
Fernand Léger, Le Moteur, 1918

Readying ourselves for this week’s Impressionist and modern art evening sales, we thought back to past November sales in New York, the triumphs that were achieved and the records that were christened. The accompanying slide show revisits the record lots from the past 10 years of New York’s November Imp/mod sales, going back to 2001, when Phillips, de Pury & Luxembourg still participated in the sales in this category.

This week, one more work will join the ranks of these top lots. Sotheby’s has sold the category’s most expensive work four years in a row, but the competition this year looks fierce, perhaps evenly matched. Will the winner be the Degas ballet dancer that Christie’s has estimated at $25-35 million, the Klimt landscape that Sotheby’s has tagged with an unlisted estimate believed to be more than $25 million, or will a dark horse emerge victorious after a surprise bidding war?

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