A Van Gogh Painting Is Expected to Fetch Over $30 Million at Christie’s

Just last week, Sotheby’s announced that one of Claude Monet’s iconic haystack paintings was coming to auction, with estimates above $30 million. It’s auction-house rival Christie’s may match that with an upcoming sale.

During its 20th Century Evening Sale on May 16, Christie’s could sell a Vincent van Gogh painting for as much as $35 million. Coin de jardin avec papillons was painted by the artist from May to July 1887, and it comes to the auction block from a distinguished private collection. Depicting a flower bed in the public gardens at Asnières, a suburban town along the Seine to the northwest of Paris, it shows off van Gogh’s striking brushstrokes in verdant shades of green, blue, and pink.

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David Hockney's "A Lawn Being Sprinkled"
David Hockney’s A Lawn Being Sprinkled

Encompassing impressionism, modern art, and the postwar period, the Christie’s sale is one of the auctioneer’s most important each year. With 64 exceptional lots on offer this time around, the auction house is expecting to bring in anywhere from $340 million to $500 million. While van Gogh’s garden will contribute mightily to that total, it’s being helped along by a slate of other impressive works.

A David Hockney from 1967, A Lawn Being Sprinkled, is slated for $25 million to $35 million—perhaps in part due to the fact that it comes from the collection of Norman Lear and his wife, Lyn. Andy Warhol’s Flowers from 1964, the only 82-inch version in which all four flowers were painted with DayGlo paint, could hammer down for $20 million to $30 million. And Pablo Picasso’s Femme au chapeau assise, painted by the Cubist in 1971, is sitting in that same price range.

Andy Warhol’s "Flowers"
Andy Warhol’s Flowers

Two Monets are also slated to grace the Christie’s auction block—fitting given that this year marks the 150th anniversary of the very first impressionist exhibition. The first, Moulin de Limetz (1888), is set to fetch $18 million to $25 million, with the final total going in part to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art to assist with future acquisitions. And the second, La Roche Guibel, Port-Domois (1886), is expected to hammer down for $6 million to $8 million.

Prior to the evening auction, the complete selection will be on view to the public at Christie’s New York from May 4 to May 16. Getting to see the works up close and personal may be the next best thing to bidding on them yourself.

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