A painting of flowers by Gustav Klimt sold in London for 48 million pounds ($59 million), a record for a work by the Austrian artist and the third-highest price for any work sold at auction in Europe, Sotheby's said on Thursday.
Described in the auction catalogue as a masterpiece of Viennese fin-de-siecle art, "Bauerngarten", completed in 1907, depicts poppies, daisies, zinnia and roses in full bloom in a garden.
It was the star attraction at Sotheby's sale of impressionist, modern and surrealist art, which took place on Wednesday evening.
This has been a strong week for modern art auctions in London. Sotheby's sale on Wednesday raised a total of 194.7 million pounds ($240.8 million). The auction house says that is a record for a London auction.
Top lots included Pablo Picasso's "Tomato Plant," which sold for 17 million pounds ($21 million), a record for a still life by the Spanish artist.
"Tonight's outstanding result is a new benchmark for London sales as much as it is a statement on the momentum of the global art market in 2017," said Helena Newman, chairman of Sotheby's Europe, in a statement.
Sotheby's said another highlight of its Wednesday sale was Pablo Picasso's 1944 work "Plant de tomates", which sold for 17 million pounds.
The auction also set a record for a work by Alfred Sisley, a British impressionist who worked mostly in France. His 1874 painting "Effet de neige a Louveciennes" sold for 7.4 million pounds.
The only art works that have fetched more in Europe are Alberto Giacometti's "Walking Man" sculpture, which sold for 65 million pounds in 2010, and Peter Paul Rubens' painting "The Massacre Of The Innocents, which netted 49.5 million pounds in 2002.
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