After spending 85 years in the UK, Pablo Picasso’s famous “Child With a Dove” painting has been sold for $74.5 million and is rumored to be heading to a Qatar gallery, London-based Artlyst has reported.
According to the publication, the painting was sold privately at a Christie’s auction last year. The UK’s Culture Minister put an export ban on the Picasso to raise enough money to buy the painting for the country, but failed to do so by the time the ban expired on Dec. 16, 2012.
The Independent adds that the new anonymous owner of Child with a Dove, which is on display at the Courtauld Gallery in London until May 26, is not obliged to put it on show.
Its upcoming departure from the UK has drawn criticism from art connoisseurs who say Picasso was poorly represented in British collections.
But Brian Sewell, art critic of the London Evening Standard, told the Independent:
“It’s absolute twaddle to think that art should be ‘owned’ by the public. [Child with a Dove is] widely rumoured to have been sold to Qatar, where they’re opening a new museum, in which case, it will still be available to the public, just a different public.”
Qatar made headlines last year when it paid $250 million for Cezanne’s The Card Players – more than double the price that has ever been paid for a single work of art on auction.
It was also rumored to have bought Edvard Munch’s The Scream, but that purchase turned out to belong to American businessman Leon Black.
Credit: Photo by Ian Bauer