I have to say it is a great time to be a Norwegian (or half a Norwegian) when the most expensive piece of art ever sold at auction happens to be by a Norwegian painter. While Munch's "Scream" might not hold this illustrious title for too long, I imagine it will be for a little while. The last painting to hold this title was Picasso's "Nude, Green Leaves, and Bust" which sold of 106 million in 2010. So I hope "The Scream" has a good few years of glory.
I just love the fact that the recent owner, now no longer an owner Petter Olsen, that grew up with the piece, thought the person in the painting to be a pretty girl with chin-length golden hair...not a man (read: Munch) holding his hands to his face and screaming in horror. What an amazing view into the world of a child....it ALMOST makes me want one (a child that is, not a Scream which of course I want).
Now, what I am about to comment on is likely controversial (in the small world of auctioneering), however, I must have my say. I was a bit disappointed, however, not surprised to see who the auctioneer was for this sale. The poster-boy of Sotheby's modern and contemporary sales- Tobias Meyers- someone that honestly, I find somewhat dull on the auction podium. Sure, he is European, and sophisticated, but not really full of much life. I have seen a number of less well-known auctioneers at Sotheby's that have packed a much bigger punch. However, I must admit, I would have LOVED to be in the room when Tobias said that he "had all the time in the world" at 99 million. Well done. I guess I am not that bitter after all, Tobias. Still a great day to be Norwegian.