A painting by famed British artist David Hockney is set to dethrone Jeff Koons's iconic "Balloon Dog" as the most expensive work by a living artist ever sold at auction.
On Thursday, November 15, "Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures)" goes on the block at Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale for an estimated $80 million, a staggering figure that would easily overtake Koons’ 2013 record of $58.4 million.
Quartz has more details:
Hockney’s previous auction record is $28.5 million for his 1990 painting “Pacific Coast Highway and Santa Monica.”
Christie’s has not revealed the private seller of “Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures).” The 1972 portrait by the 81-year-old Hockney is perhaps the most famous of his pool-related paintings.
Swimming pools, specifically the private backyard pools commonplace in Los Angeles, were a major subject of Hockney’s work since he moved to the city from the UK in 1964.
”I always loved swimming pools, all the wiggly lines they make,” Hockney told CNN in 2017. “If you photograph them, it freezes them whereas if you use paint, you can have wiggly lines that wiggle.”
One thing's for sure, Hockney's most famous pool painting is definitely set to make a splash that will impact the high-end art world for years to come.