A landscape of Vincent van Gogh Confiscated by the Nazis during the occupation of France in World War II, it was sold at auction in New York for $ 35.9 million, a record for a watercolor by the Dutch impressionist.
The work of 1888, Mueles de ble, was acquired for a price well above its pre-sale estimate of between $ 20 million and $ 30 million, according to auction house Christie’s. It was last exhibited in 1905.
Mueles de ble depicts a haystack in Arles, France, where Van Gogh lived for more than a year in the 1880s. Unlike his best-known works, painted in oil, the painting was made with watercolor, gouache, pen and ink on paper.
After the artist’s suicide at age 37, the work was initially owned by his brother, Theo van Gogh. After passing through several owners, it was confiscated by the Nazi forces during their occupation of France.
After the war, the painting was unaccounted for until the 1970s. It remained in private hands until Christie’s acquired the work through an agreement with the collector and the heirs of the original owners.
Van Gogh is considered one of the greatest and most influential painters in art, although he had little commercial success during his lifetime.