NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A celebrated portrait of a Parisian actress by Edouard Manet set a new auction record for the artist Wednesday, during the second day of a major fall sale in New York of impressionist and modern art.
“Le Printemps,” or “Spring,” was sold at Christie’s Wednesday for $65 million, almost doubling the previous record of $33.2 million for the French impressionist.
“Le Printemps” is considered a Manet masterpiece. It was first presented at the 1882 Paris Salon and depicts actress Jeanne Demarsy in a floral dress and bonnet as an evocation of spring.
In the painting, Demarsy is presented in profile, in a style influenced by Goya and early Renaissance portraits of young noblewomen, Christie’s said.
Manet had intended four allegorical works of the four seasons but only completed “Le Printemps” and “L’Automne” or “Autumn.”
The presentation of “Le Printemps,” as well as another masterpiece titled “Un bar aux Folies-Bergère,” came to redefine Manet’s legacy at the 1882 salon. Previously, the salon system in France had thwarted Manet’s aspirations for public recognition, Christie’s said.
Manet was one of the leading artists of the impressionist movement, famous for his portraits and scenes from everyday life.
He died in 1883 at 51.
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