A potential record-breaking price for a piece of work by Italian Renaissance master, Sandro Botticelli, is expected to be reached in January when it goes under auction in New York.
‘Young Man Holding a Roundel’ has been billed by Sotheby’s as one of the greatest paintings from the era still in private hands.
With an estimate in excess of US$80 million (approx. HK$620 million), is expected to smash the previous US$10.4 million (HK$80.6 million) auction record set seven years ago for a painting by the Florence native.
(Image credit: Sotheby’s/Facebook)
The subject of the enigmatic portrait is not known, but art historians believe it could be a depiction of a close friend of the Medici family, which ruled the Italian city during Botticelli’s life.
The painting has been dated to the artist’s most prolific years in the late 15th century, when Pope Sixtus IV invited him to help decorate the Sistine Chapel in Rome. During that period he produced some of his most famous works including “the Birth of Venus”.
“This Botticelli is so much more spectacular in every way than anything we’ve seen coming to market,” said Sotheby’s senior vice president Christopher Apostle.
“It says everything about Florentine culture and that moment of the Renaissance, when just everything fundamentally changes in Western thinking and art and literature.”
Despite its age, the painting has been kept in an immaculate state and has been exhibited in several museums.
It last changed hands in 1982, when a private collector bought it for £810,000 (approx. HK$8.2 million).
This article was published via AFP Relaxnews. (Hero and featured image credit: Timothy A. Clary/AFP)