Leonardo Christ painting sells for record $450M

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Credit: AP

NEW YORK  — A rare painting by Renaissance master Leonardo da Vinci of Christ holding a crystal orb has sold for a record $450 million (380 million euros) at a New York auction.

The painting, “Salvator Mundi,” Italian for “Savior of the World,” was sold Wednesday by Christie’s auction house.

The highest price paid for a work of art at auction had been $179.4 million (152 million euros), for Picasso’s “Women of Algiers (Version O)” in May 2015, also at Christie’s in New York.

The highest known sale price for any artwork had been $300 million (253 million euros) for Willem de Kooning’s “Interchange” in September 2015, which was sold privately.

Scholars believe the Leonardo painting is one of few works by Leonardo to survive the centuries since his death and the only one in private hands.