A famous Andy Warhol silkscreen of Marilyn Monroe sold for $195 million on Monday (09.05.22) night.
The iconic 'Shot Sage Blue Marilyn' - which was painted in 1964 - became the most expensive piece of American art ever sold when gallery owner and art dealer Larry Gagosian splurged on the painting at a Christie's sale in York, shattering the previous record, which was set in 2017 when $110.5 million was paid for a 1982 skull painting by Jean-Michael Basquiat.
The price - which rose from $170 million when taxes and fees were added - also smashed the previous 2015 record for a 20th Century Work of Art, beating the $179.4 million, including fees, paid for Pablo Picasso's 'Les Femmes d'Alger (Version O)'.
Despite the record-breaking sum, the auction house had estimated the painting, which they described as "one of the rarest and most transcendent images in existence", would fetch $200 million before the sale.
The Thomas and Doris Ammann Foundation Zurich - which works to establish education and healthcare programmes for children around the world - put the painting up for auction and all proceeds will go to the cause.
In March, George Frei, the chairman of the board of the foundation said the portrait of the late actress "bears witness to her undiminished visual power in the new millennium".
He added in a statement: "Marilyn the woman is gone; the terrible circumstances of her life and death are forgotten.
"All that remains is the enigmatic smile that links her to another mysterious smile of a distinguished lady, the Mona Lisa."