Christie’s Unveils $35m Twombly Leda & Swan for May


In yet another sign of the brightening prospects for the top end of the art market, Christie’s has landed a major Cy Twombly work for the May sales. This 1962 version of Leda and the Swan (there’s another at MoMA) and has been in the same collection for more than a quarter century. The estimate on the work is $35-55m.

Christie’s is honored to offer Cy Twombly’s Leda and the Swan, 1962 as a highlight of its May 17 Post-War and Contemporary Evening Sale. This unequivocal tour de force has resided within a private collection for over 25 years and has not been seen publicly in all that time. One of two large format masterpieces to emerge from this unbridled subject, Leda and the Swan’s heroic sister painting of the same title is among the most popular works on view within the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Never before at auction, the painting has only had two private owners and is completely fresh to the market (estimate $35-55 million).
Koji Inoue, International Director, Post-War and Contemporary Art, remarked: “This is a remarkable painting that has been pursued by collectors for decades. Given its tremendous importance within the context of both Twombly’s oeuvre, and the canon of Post-War art, we are honored to have the opportunity to offer this work to the market after nearly thirty clandestine years. This is also a particularly exciting time for the Twombly market, given its overlap with the Centre Pompidou’s groundbreaking retrospective of the artist’s expansive career.”