Scott Reyburn has the early word on another Bacon triptych coming up for sale at Christie’s in New York this May:
The Irish-born artist’s 1984 “Three Studies for a Portrait of John Edwards” is estimated to sell for about $80 million at Christie’s on May 13 in New York, the London-based company was set to announce on Monday. It’s the second of Bacon’s large-scale triptychs to appear on the auction market in the past six years. Just 16 out of the 28 he produced remain in private hands, according to Christie’s.
This widely exhibited work, depicting the east London pub manager who was Bacon’s companion during the last years of his life, is being sold by the Taiwanese entrepreneur and collector Pierre Chen. A regular buyer and seller of contemporary works at the top end of the market, Mr. Chen acquired the triptych through a Sotheby’s private sale for about $15 million between 2004 and 2005, according to three dealers familiar with the transaction. It had been owned by a Brazilian collector, who acquired it at auction for £3.1 million, or $4.5 million, at Christie’s London in February 2001.
Francis Bacon’s Moment (NYTimes)