The Worlds Most Expensive Art

Submitted by: Sean Donahoe

Do you ever wonder how much that piece of art in your home may be worth? Do you have an original piece of art by a unknown artist or are you lucky enough to have an original piece of art by a popular artist? The art world is often surprised when a rare piece is placed on the market and keen collectors almost fall over themselves to obtain this rare art piece for their collections. The following list is the top 10 most expensive art pieces recorded to date in descending order. Get ready to be amazed.

Note: These prices are take into consideration inflation from the original reported auctions or private sales and is priced in $Million USD. This list provides estimated prices only and is not intended to be an accurate record of art sales. This article is used to illustrate art worth in general terms.

10. Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer II by Gustav Klimt – $89.1 Million

Adele Bloch-Bauer II was painted in 1912 by Gustav Klimt. Adele Bloch-Bauer was the wife of Ferdinand Bloch-Bauer, a rich industrialist of the time, who was a keen sponsor the arts and supported Gustav Klimt’s work. Adele Bloch-Bauer was the only model ever to be painted twice by Gustav Klimt. This item was part of a set of two and Adele also appeared in the much more known “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I”.

9. Portrait de l’artiste sans barbe by Vincent van Gogh – $90.1 Million

One of the numerous self portraits Vincent Van Gogh created, this particular version is the most recognizable and popular. Painted in 1889, this piece created massive waves of interest when it was placed at auction at Christie’s, New York. Christie’s only estimated this piece would sell for around $20 Million.

8. Dora Maar au Chat by Pablo Picasso – $97 Million

Dora Maar au Chat commonly known as Dora Maar with Cat was created in 1941 by Pablo Picasso. This wonderful work by Picasso depicts his Croatian mistress, Dora Maar, seated on a chair with a small black cat perched on her shoulders. As was often seen with his work, he uses large areas of contrasting color to draw out the subject.

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7. Irises by Vincent Van Gogh – $97.5 Million

Irises is one of the most famous pieces painted by Vincent van Gogh. This piece was one of his early works while he was at the asylum in Saint-R my-de-Provence, France and was painted shortly before his death in 1890. This item is currently on view at the Getty Museum in California.

6. Gar on la pipe by Pablo Picasso – $113.4 Million

Currently owned by the estate of John Hay Whitney, it sold for $104.1 million at an auction in New York’s Sotheby’s in 2004. Sotheby’s estimated originally a pre-sale price of $70 million. Many of the worlds art critics speculated that the painting’s high sale price has much more to do with the artist’s name than with the historical importance of the painting itself.

5. Bal au moulin de la Galette, Montmartre by Pierre-Auguste Renoir – $122.8 Million

Commonly known as Le Moulin de la Galette, this wonderful work by the popular French artist Pierre-Auguste Renoir was created in 1876 at the Mus e d Orsay in Paris. Bal au Moulin de la Galette, Montmartre is a smaller version of an impressionist painting Renoir painted of the same name.

4. Portrait of Dr. Gachet by Vincent van Gogh – $129.7 Million

Again, Vincent van Gogh appears on our list with one of the most expensive pieces of art in history. This portrait of Gachet was created just outside Paris in 1890, and depicts his then doctor, Paul Gachet. Gachet, who looked after Vincent during the artist’s last months. Gachet was an hobby artist and formed a good friendship with Van Gogh.

3. Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I by Gustav Klimt – $137.6 Million

The partner to the previously described piece of art. This is the first portrait of Adel Bloch-Bauer Klimt and was created in 1907. According to reports, it was sold in June 2006 for $135 million to Ronald Lauder for his gallery in New York City. At the time this sale occured it set a record as the most expensive painting ever sold.

2. Woman III by Willem de Kooning – $140.2 Million

Abstract expressionist painter Willem de Kooning painted this print in 1953 and this fantastic piece is one of 6 paintings by Kooning in which the central theme was a woman. Woman III was sold by David Geffen in November 2006 to the billionaire Steven A. Cohen for a reported $137.5 Million.

1. No. 5, 1948 by Jackson Pollock – $142.7Million

At Last, we come to the most valuable art to date, No. 5,1948 by the artist Jackson Pollock. This abstract work of art, created in 1948, was created on a 8 x 4 feet sheet of fiberboard, with large amounts of thick brown and yellow paint drizzled on top of it, forming a chaotic nest-like appearance. This work of art was sold by David Geffen in 2006 for $140 Million making it the most valuable piece of art ever sold.

So, as you can see, there is some incredibly valuable works of art in the art industry being sold. Certainly, you are asking yourself “What about other pieces of older art?” All of these wonderful pieces of art in this list were created after 1800. Any art prior to this date is usually in the possession of museums across the world. The Mona Lisa, for example, was insured in 1962 for around $100 Million. When we consider the rate of inflation it’s estimated worth would be around $670 Million today. However, you are unlikely to ever see this majestic smile in Christie’s or Sotheby’s anytime soon.

If you have been inspired by these items and would like to see more. Amazingly you do not have to pay anywhere near these prices if you would like a copy of these items on your wall! You can discover wonderful reproductions of each of these items in many sizes, formats and mediums on our website. We have one of the world’s largest inventories of art from the popular artists in this list to unknown artists and cover every aspect and work of art imaginable. We hope you have found this article informative and as inspiring as we did in writing this.

About the Author: Sean Donahoe is the CEO and founder of

, one of the internet’s leading art suppliers, which he runs with his wife Tamara.

has a massive inventory of high-quality art poster prints, fine jacquard weave tapestries and more…


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