Nude Painting of Bea Arthur Sold for $1.9 Million; Less Than Expected

Friday, 17 May 2013 09:21 AM

By Alexandra Ward

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
A topless painting of the late actress Bea Arthur sold for $1.9 million at an auction in New York Wednesday night, far less than it was expected to fetch.

Created in 1991 by artist John Currin, the oil painting was part of a larger Christie's auction of post-war and contemporary art that netted a record $495 million.

Urgent: Is Obamacare Hurting Your Wallet? Vote in Poll

Titled "Bea Arthur Nude," Currin's painting shows "The Golden Girls" star topless from the waist up. According to lot notes on Christie's website, the painting was derived from a photograph of the actress with clothes on. It was expected to fetch as much as $2.5 million.


Arthur, best known for her Emmy Award-winning roles in the 1970s and 80s television series "Maude" and "The Golden Girls," died in 2009 from cancer.

The painting has been causing controversy since it was created. Peter Schjeldahl wrote in The New Yorker in 2003 that the portrait was part of Currin's "acrid fantasy portraits of menopausal women."

Currin is widely known for depicting his subjects in provocative poses. Some writers even urged art lovers to boycott Currin's shows in the early 90s. But his work is now widely acclaimed and hangs in museums such as the Whitney.

ALERT: Government ‘Blunder’ Spawns Massive Profit Opportunity

A Christie's spokesperson called the Arthur painting "visually lasting."

"It's historically significant — it’s radical to sexualize someone people think of as asexual," spokesman Koji Inoue told the New York Post. "The painting has a visual toughness to it — but it’s also fun."

Related stories:

Christie's to Sell Elizabeth Taylor Art Collection

Painting of Christ Fetches $4.6M at NY Auction

Picasso Sells at NYC Auction for Record $106.5M

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Send me more news as it happens.
 
 
Get me on The Wire
Send me more news as it happens.
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Top Stories

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved