In case you were wondering what art to hand in an $88 million Central Park West apartment, obviously Andreas Gursky's photograph Rhein II would be a contender, since it just broke the record for most expensive photograph with its sale at Christie's last night. The 73 inch by 143 inch image was sold for $4,338,500.
Christie's Head of Post War and Contemporary Art Europe Francis Outred explained to CBS News, "This is an image which speaks to everyman on many different levels. At its most basic, it is an astounding picture of nature, which has been scaled and detailed to take the viewer right into the scene in the way that artists have strived to do throughout history." And according to the Christie's listing, the other prints in the edition are at the "Museum of Modern Art, New York; Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich; Tate Modern, London and the Glenstone Collection, Potomac." So, it's a good deal?
The Telegraph's Florence Waters swooned over the photograph:
It could be a long time before a photograph comes along that will top Gursky’s print. This image is a vibrant, beautiful and memorable - I should say unforgettable - contemporary twist on Germany’s famed genre and favourite theme: the romantic landscape, and man’s relationship with nature.
But it is more than that. For all its apparent simplicity, the photograph is a statement of dedication to its craft. The late 1980s, when Gursky shot to attention, was a time when photography was first entering gallery spaces, and photographs were taking their place alongside paintings. Photography “as art”, at the time, was still brave and new, and the simplicity of this image shows a great deal of confidence in its effectiveness and potential for creating atmospheric, hyper-real scenarios that in turn teach us to see - and read - the world around us anew. The scale, attention to colour and form of his photography can be read as a deliberate challenge to painting's status as a higher art form. On top of that, Gursky’s images are extraordinary technical accomplishments, which take months to set up in advance, and require a lot of digital doctoring to get just right.
Whatever—we imagine this will be at some 1% corporate waiting room, it's got the right amount of boring at the right price! [Via Daily Intel]