This Picasso Painting Is Expected To Fetch $140 Million At Auction

A radiant masterpiece by Pablo Picasso from the 1950s will lead an auction in May where it could top $140 million.

“Women of Algiers (Version O)” will be offered at Christie’s on May 11.

The vibrantly colorful 1955 painting features a scantily attired female in the foreground amid a jumble of smaller female nudes. The central figure is Picasso’s muse Jacqueline Roque, who became his second wife in 1961.

The oil on canvas was part of a 15-work series Picasso created between 1954 and 1955 that was inspired by “Women of Algiers in their Apartment” by Eugene Delacroix, an 1834 work Picasso greatly admired that hangs in the Louvre in Paris.

The hefty pre-sale estimate hovers near the current record for any artwork sold at auction, held by Francis Bacon’s triptych “Three Studies of Lucian Freud.” It sold at Christie’s for $142.4 million in 2013.

Christie’s did not reveal the seller, but said the collector acquired the painting in 1997 for $31.9 million when Christie’s sold the collection of noted New York collectors Victor and Sally Ganz, who at one time owned all 15 works in the series.

“One can arguably say that this is the single most important painting by Picasso to remain in private hands,” said Olivier Camu, Christie’s deputy chairman of impressionist and modern art.

The work has been in several major museum retrospectives in the 1950s and 1960s. More recently it appeared in exhibitions at the National Gallery in London, the Louvre in Paris and the Tate Britain.

“Women of Algiers (Version O)” will be offered with a group of two dozen other blue chip works created between 1902 and the end of the 20th century in a stand-alone sale called “Looking Forward to the Past.”

In May 2010, Christie’s set an auction record for any work by Picasso when it sold his 1932 painting “Nude, Green Leave and Bust” of his mistress Marie-Thérèse Walter for $106.5 million.

Picasso’s ‘Women Of Algiers’ Could Become The Most Expensive Painting Sold At Auction

New York City’s spring art auctions get underway Tuesday with exceptional pieces by Pablo Picasso, Alberto Giacometti, Vincent Van Gogh and others whose work continues to fuel a robust market for impressionist, modern and contemporary art.

Picasso’s “Women of Algiers (Version O),” estimated to bring over $140 million, is poised to become the most expensive artwork sold at auction, while Giacometti’s “Pointing Man” could set an auction record for a sculpture if bidding soars to an expected $130 million.

Experts say the once unimaginable prices are fueled by established and wealthy new buyers and the desire by collectors to own the best works.

“I don’t really see an end to it, unless interest rates drop sharply, which I don’t see happening in the near future,” said Manhattan dealer Richard Feigen. “Buyers will flock in from the Far East, the Gulf and Europe.”

In 2012, Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” fetched nearly $120 million only to be bested a year later when Francis Bacon’s triptych “Three Studies of Lucian Freud” sold for $142.4 million.

Now Picasso’s 1955 “Women of Algiers” could potentially eclipse that stratospheric price tag. The vibrantly colorful work featuring a scantily attired female amid smaller nudes is part of a 15-work series that Picasso created in 1954-1955. It has appeared in several major museum retrospectives of the artist.

Giacometti’s 1947 “Pointing Man,” a life-size bronze of an elongated figure with extended arms, has been in the same private collection for 45 years. Giacometti, who died in 1966, made six casts of the work; four are in museums, the others are in private hands and a foundation collection.

His “Walking Man I” holds the auction record for a sculpture. It sold in 2010 for $104.3 million.

The Picasso and Giacometti are among two dozen blue chip 20th-century works that Christie’s is offering in a stand-alone sale called “Looking Forward to the Past.”

“The pieces for sale this spring are truly outstanding. Many, like Giacometti’s ‘Pointing Man,’ are iconic 20th-century works of art and (are) of museum quality. The Tate and MoMA own editions of ‘Pointing Man,’ for example,” said Sarah Lichtman, professor of design history and curatorial studies at The New School.

She said impressionist and modern artworks continue to corner the market because “they are beautiful, accessible and a proven value … the works epitomize the conservative, moneyed establishment.”

Another piece that could test the market is “Benefits Supervisor Resting” by Lucian Freud, who died in 2011. Considered one of the British artist’s most celebrated works, it depicts the ample figure of a reclining woman, every fold, curve and blemish of her naked form revealed. Christie’s is offering it May 13 with a pre-sale estimate of $30 million to $50 million. Another painting from the series, “Benefits Supervisor Sleeping,” brought $33.6 million at Christie’s in 2008. At the time, it was the most expensive painting by a living artist sold at auction.

The spring auctions begin at Sotheby’s on Tuesday with a sale featuring a late van Gogh. “The Allee of Alyscampsis” is a lush autumnal scene that the artist created in 1888 while working side-by-side for two months with his friend Paul Gauguin in Arles, in the south of France. Sotheby’s predicts it will bring more than $40 million.

“To have a canvas from Arles by that very self-taught artist at the height of his work marks the sale as momentous,” said Clifford Edwards, a van Gogh expert and professor at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Also on Tuesday, Sotheby’s is offering six paintings spanning four decades of Claude Monet’s career for an estimated $78 million. The star is “Water Lilies,” a 1905 version of the artist’s beloved pond and gardens at his home in Giverny, France, that is estimated to fetch $30 million to $45 million. Monet’s 1908 painting of Venice with a view of the Palazzo Ducale on the Grand Canal could bring $15 million to $20 million.

At its contemporary art auction on May 12, Sotheby’s is offering Rothko’s “Untitled (Yellow and Blue)” for an estimated $40 million to $60 million. It hung at the National Gallery in Washington for 10 years while it was owned by the late Rachel “Bunny” Mellon. Another highlight, Roy Lichtenstein’s “The Ring (Engagement),” could bring in about $50 million.

Among the highlights at Christie’s May 13 auction is Andy Warhol’s “Colored Mona Lisa” estimated to bring about $35 million.

“Swamped,” by Peter Doig could surpass the current $18 million record for the British artist when it goes under the hammer at Christie’s May 11 sale. It’s estimated at $20 million.

Lichtman predicted that buyers will continue to seek “these works out as they would a blue chip company that pays reliable dividends for years to come.”

10 Unexpected Philosopher Portraits In The Styles Of Famous Artists

Style and substance come together in the imaginative paintings of Renee Bolinger, a student of both art and philosophy.

In an effort to combine her two passions, Bolinger embarked upon a series of portraits that pair a great thinker with a great creative talent, illuminating unexpected links between them along the way. We never, for example, would have connected Elizabeth Anscombe, a philosopher of action, with Jackson Pollock, the visionary behind action painting, although now it all seems so clear!

Behold, 10 unexpected pairings of art and philosophy. Learn more about the project below.

Anonymous Buyer Fails To Come Up With Money For Banksy’s Nazi Thrift Store Painting

Remember when Banksy purchased a $50 landscape painting from a New York City thrift store, added a Nazi to the placid scene, and then dropped the artwork back off where he found it? Remember how that bizarre chain of events led to a buzzed-about online auction, in which one very lucky (and very anonymous) bidder managed tosnag the painting for a piddly $615,000?

Well, it turns out that pesky anonymous bidder, or “gorpetri” as he’s known on the auction site Bidding for Good, defaulted on his bid, abandoning the “The Banality of the Banality of Evil” painting and turning the charity event into a source of speculation.

According to The New York Times, gorpetri immediately bailed on his $615,000 bid, leaving the thrift store Housing Works in a lurch. In an attempt to right the auction wrong, the charity organization reached out to the second bidder, art collector Rachel Hirschfeld, who placed a $614,800 bid for the painting. Hirschfeld, however, was nonplussed at the idea of paying a price potentially elevated by the actions of an irresponsible bidder. “Every bid that he made has to be out,” she replied.

Housing Works didn’t stop with Hirschfeld. Representatives reached out to to “all the top qualified bidders” who offered to pay more than $500,4000, reports Talking Points Memo, using a fax-machine based method of weighing new bids. Eventually, the painting was sold to another anonymous buyer in a deal sealed last week. The total price was not disclosed.

“We were happy with the [second] sale,” Housing Works COO Matthew Bernardo told The Times. “We were happy with the process which we closed with, and it’s at a very good home.”

The other bidders, however, remain less than pleased. “I think they used my fax to bid [another] person higher. I felt very used,” Hirschfel added to The Times. “Perhaps Banksy himself had bid up the sale.”

Welcome To The Painted Universe Of ‘Girls’ Star Jemima Kirke

Quite often, we respond to any mention of a celebrity figure dabbling in the fine arts with an over-the-top eye roll and an exaggerated “Whyyyyyy?” But we’re making an exception for Brooklyn-based painter Jemima Kirke, whom you may know as Jessa on HBO’s “Girls.”

For one thing, Kirke can actually paint, her off-balance portraits of women possessing a combined air of sensuality and otherness that feels simultaneously familiar and unreachably distant. Even if you have the urge to write off Kirke’s paintings as neo-portraits of the bohemian Brooklyn elite, there’s a lingering darkness that draws you back in. You get the feeling that Kirke’s paintings work in spite of, not because of, her fame onscreen.


San Francisco gallery Fouladi Projects describes Kirke’s sitters, all women, as embodying “vulnerability, frustration and suppressed longing thinly disguised beneath cool faux-sophisticated facades.” Her paintings, through their intimate perspective and slightly warped proportions, achieve the effect of leaning in to stare at a loved one so closely that they begin to lose their familiarity and morph into an amalgam of alien face parts.

And yet these subjects don’t feel like strangers, even though we’ve never seen a majority of the them before. For some more recognizable sitters, like Lena Dunham and model Annabelle Dexter-Jones, this sense of familiarity is right on point. Beyond this, there’s a sense of assumed proximity to Kirke’s subjects, as if we’re not just seeing them but Kirke’s impression of them.

Reminiscent of Alice Neel and early Lucian Freud, Kirke’s paintings are straight-forward yet full of shadows, imperfections and impossible geometry. Kirke continues to tackle the basic problems posed by painting and portraiture since the days of Edouard Manet. How do you capture the likeness of a person — is it through their features or is it something else? With subjects including her close friends, her daughter, sister, trainer and herself, Kirke grapples with the nearly impossible task of capturing the essence of another in paint.

Kirke isn’t ignorant of the fact that her acting career has boosted a widespread interest in her artwork. (The internet was even fascinated by a small glimpse of her home life.) Yet she remains refreshingly aware of her peculiar situation, opting for gratitude over denial. “If someone was willing to show my work now, I don’t really care why. I’m honored to have the platform,” she told T-Magazine.

Her solo exhibition, aptly titled “Platforms,” is now showing at Fouladi Projects in San Francisco. Take a look at Kirke’s work below and let us know if you think her paintings are strong enough to stand on their own.

Understanding communication from Oprah to Twitter

There’s a story about the ancient Greek statesman named Demosthenes who learned the art of public speaking by practicing with pebbles in his mouth. Learning how to effectively communicate has come a long way since 300 BC. Today, we need to know the best ways to communicate – not with pebbles in our mouths – but through a variety of technologically advanced mediums and involving various individuals, groups, contexts and audiences.

Eric “Duff” Wrobbel, an associate professor in the department of applied communication studies at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, explores how today’s communication can be made most effective.

“My roots are in rhetoric, the study of speaking and writing,” Wrobbel explained. “But the idea of applied communication reflects how the field has expanded and specialized.” He said that there are many different branches of communication that can be studied. For example, there are areas that focus only on health communication, political communication, or organizational communication.

Applied communication also examines how to communicate with different audiences and in different contexts.

“There is a difference in talking with one person instead of two,” Wrobbel said. “The dynamics and the rules are different. When you add a third person, then the rules change again.” Who is talking also makes a difference in how one communicates and the rules for communication.

“For example, a doctor talking to a patient has different rules than two friends talking while having coffee,” he said. Context also makes a difference. For example, the context will determine the inflection one might use when talking.

“The tone and inflection a person would use in saying ‘How are you doing?’ is different when greeting a friend in a hospital than when seeing the same person at a restaurant,” Wrobbel explained.

Wrobbel is particularly interested in how social media impacts communication. Social media, he said, has dramatically altered all of the normal factors and rules about communication.

“Just think. There are no non-verbal cues, like a smile or some other facial expression, no change in tone or inflection and no cues like breathing or speed of talking that help the listener interpret the meaning of the communication,” Wrobbel said about social media. “Instead, the communication is compressed and without all of those visual and sound factors that help us understand what is being said to us.” This is an important reason why people use emoticons (like smiley or frowny faces) with their social media communication, he added. And an obvious danger with social media, Wrobbel explained, is that you can’t edit your remarks.

“How many times have you sent an email that someone misunderstood because they couldn’t tell you were being sarcastic?” Wrobbel asked. Another example might be how one communicates through Facebook. “Someone might post a comment that their dog died, and someone else responds by saying they are sad. How do you respond? Do you click on the ‘Like’ button? Social Media changes the rules of communication. It makes communication faster, but one needs to be aware of the rules.”

If rules for communication vary by audience, medium, and context, then where does Oprah Winfrey, the well-known TV talk show host, fit? And how has she been so successful in reaching a large and varied audience?

“Rhetoric is the study of public discourse,” Wrobbel explained. This branch of applied communication looks at what makes a speech great, like Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, and what makes for a “great communicator,” like Ronald Reagan. For Wrobbel, people like Barbara Walters and Oprah Winfrey don’t get enough credit for being good communicators.

“Oprah is famous for getting guests to cry, but Barbara Walters is exceptional in listening to people and then asking them the probing questions to reveal information that they might not otherwise,” Wrobbel said. This kind of communication skill is exceptional, he added, in that it illustrates a number of important aspects of applied communication – audience, context and verbal and non-verbal cues.

Wrobbel came to SIUE in 1993 after earning a master’s degree from San Diego State and a Ph.D. from The University of Texas at Austin.

“I thought I might go into consulting,” he said, “but I fell in love with teaching.” And, he is good at it. Wrobbel has won nearly every teaching award SIUE has to offer.

“I believe in the teacher/scholar model for SIUE,” he said. “It is what makes SIUE’s education special for our students. I teach what I teach because I believe it is among the most supremely practical material any student can learn. It permeates everything, and yet it is often like the water to the fish. People don’t really give it any thought.

Jollibee Big Burger Steak: For those with Big Cravings!

For hardworking professionals who are always on the go and on the hunt for big adventures, Jollibee is giving them a treat that will surely satisfy their big appetites! The Big Burger Steak is now available in the market! Packed with so much flavor, the Big Burger Steak comes in a thick 1/3-pound Champ patty made with 100% pure beef, served with rice and its much raved about mushroom gravy.

The Jollibee Big Burger Steak can be enjoyed solo for only P89, and only P95 with a regular drink.

The heavyweight goodness of the new Jollibee Big Burger Steak is available in Jollibee stores nationwide.


Madonna posts lingerie photo on Instagram after deleting

Madonna has deleted a controversial photo that she posted in support of Margaret Thatcher on Instagram, before replacing it with a lingerie picture.

The superstar, who regularly uploads snaps of famous people she respects, originally captioned the image of the former Prime Minister with praise.

She wrote: “If you set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time, and you would achieve nothing.

“Thank you Margaret Thatcher! #unapologetic #rebel heart.”

After receiving a number of complaints from fans, the 56-year-old took the post down, without any explanation.

She then replaced it with a rather racy photo of herself in black and red lingerie, with red roses strewn around her.

Blake Lively Looked Like A Sexy Saloon Girl

Blake Lively had some excellent maternity style, but we missed her and her big hair and shiny ballgowns on the red carpet. Last night, however, she made her first major post-baby red carpet appearance at the premiere of The Age of Adaline in New York, and she is clearly making up for lost time with one of her most over-the-top red carpet looks ever.

Lively’s red Monique Lhuillier gown is sexy and glamorous and enormous. It is so much dress, it is basically the distilled essence of red carpet gown. If you stuffed all the dresses from last year’s Oscars, Met Gala, and Country Music Awards into a big machine and compressed them all together into one Supergown, I think this is the dress that would come out.


The gown hits every big “Look At Me” trend of the past decade: Bright red color, lace over sheer illusion, tiers of crazy ruffles, a massive train, and even that odd leather harness around her waist and shoulders.

This dress is costumey, over-the-top, and looks a bit like a community theater saloon girl costume. It would be an overwhelming dress on 90 percent of Hollywood, but somehow Lively manages to pull it off. She’s tall, she’s poised, she’s gorgeous, and she’s very practiced at wearing very, very big gowns and looking comfortable in them. Somehow she wears the biggest gowns and always looks as comfortable as if she were in jeans.


Racy lingerie retailer Frederick’s of Hollywood closes all of its stores

Sexy lingerie brand Frederick’s of Hollywood has shut down all of its brick-and-mortar locations, now existing exclusively as an e-commerce brand after years of declining sales and struggling to keep up with Victoria’s Secret.

The Los Angeles-based company has switched to a web-only retail model following the closure of all of its 94 locations, with the brand now encouraging customers to shop online,The Los Angeles Times reported on Thursday.

‘We no longer have store locations,’ reads the brand’s website, which goes on to note that the online store offers the same selection of products.

New look: Frederick’s of Hollywood, which is known for its sexy lingerie (pictured), has closed all of its brick-and-mortar locations

Making it work: The retailer announced on it’s website that it ‘no longer’ has store locations while reminding customers that its ‘online store offers the same selection of products’

‘As a company, I think they became old and stale,’ Ron Friedman, a retail expert at consulting and accounting firm Marcum, told The Los Angeles Times. ‘Victoria’s Secret has been a home run compared to them.’

But Mr Friedman went on to say that Frederick’s of Hollywood Group Inc. can still be successful with careful corporate strategy.

‘They have to really focus and hire people that really understand the online business,’ he noted.

Founder Frederick Mellinger opened the pinup-inspired lingerie brand’s first store in Los Angeles in 1947 and went on to launch a mail order catalog in the 1960s, later adding sex toys and more risqué attire to the company’s offerings.

Mr Mellinger, who famously said ‘sex appeal is always in style’, died in 1990 at the age of 76.

A decade later in 2000, his namesake company, which once had pin-up icon Bettie Page modeling its lingerie, declared bankruptcy. After emerging from bankruptcy in 2003, the company went public in 2006.