Two dozen modern and surrealist art works amassed by a private collector, including important paintings by Joan Miro and Rene Magritte, are expected to fetch at least 64 million pounds ($100 million) when they go on auction in London next year.
The collection, from an anonymous European collector who bought the art over almost half a century ago, contains eight surrealist paintings by Magritte — the most impressive group of the artist's work to come to the market in recent years. It also includes works by Pablo Picasso, Amedeo Modigliani and Alberto Giacometti.
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"Every work was carefully selected. There's no fluff in here — it's all hard-hitting quality," Olivier Camu, a modern art expert at Christie's auction house told The Associated Press.
The most valuable of the 24 works is a large oil painting on canvas by Miro, estimated to fetch 7 to 9 million pounds ($10.9 million to $14.1 million). The colorful 1953 painting, with a French title that translates as "The bird with the fully spread-out feathers flies toward the silvery tree," evokes a dream world, with two abstract creatures beneath a moon and stars.
"It's one of the most extraordinary and beautiful Miros," Camu said.
Another highlight is Modigliani's 1918 painting "Les deux filles" ("The two girls"), a rare double portrait of a young woman and a girl that is expected to sell for up to 8 million pounds ($12.5 million). The painting had only been offered at auction once before — it had previously been owned by the same family for over 90 years.
The auction takes place Feb. 4 in London.