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$111m sale of Monet haystacks painting breaks records

Plus: Budapest museum removes unflattering portrait of Hungarian prime minister | UK Parliament's art collection to include more women

15 May 2019

Our daily round-up of news from the art world

$111m sale of Monet haystacks painting breaks auction records | Claude Monet’s Meules (1890) sold for $110.7 million at Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern sale on Tuesday night, setting a new record for the artist and for any Impressionist work. The painting of haystacks glowing in a pink-and-yellow sunset had been part of a private collection since 1986, when it was bought for $2.5 million. ‘In the Impressionist market,’ said the lawyer for the painting’s consignor, ‘Monet talks.’

Budapest museum removes unflattering portrait of Hungarian prime minister | A participatory artwork by János Brückner has been removed by the Ludwig Museum in Budapest for its depiction of Viktor Orbán, Hungary’s far-right prime minister. The artwork, titled Here and Now, was begun two months ago; visitors to the museum have helped Brückner sketch a large wall drawing, gradually revealed to be a portrait of Orbán. Two clocks covering his eyes are printed with the phrase ‘This Too Shall Pass’. According to Brückner, museum director Júlia Fabényi removed the work over fears it would provoke a negative public reaction.

UK Parliament’s art collection to include more women | More images of female politicians will be displayed in the Palace of Westminster, according to a plan by Labour MP Alison McGovern, the chair of the Speaker’s advisory committee on works of art. McGovern told The Guardian that the overhaul responds to public demand: ‘When I tell people that I chair this committee, the single most common question I get asked is: why are there no women on the walls?’

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