Leonardo's "Salvator Mundi" Is Headed to the Louvre Abu Dhabi

Elias Hubbard
December 7, 2017

"Salvator Mundi", a painting of Christ by Leonardo Da Vinci recently sold at auction in NY for a record US$450 million (RM1.82 billion), will be displayed at the Louvre Abu Dhabi, the museum said yesterday on Twitter. Hyperallergic has reached out to the museum for details, but has not yet received any response. It's not entirely surprising, though, especially given last week's news that the Louvre in Paris is now in negotiations to secure a loan of "Salvator Mundi" for a major Leonardo exhibition slated for October 2019.

Documents provided from inside Saudi Arabia revealed that representatives for Prince Bader, did not present him as a bidder until the day before the sale.

According to The New York Times, the painting was bought by Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan al-Saud, who is said to be a close friend of Saudi Arabia's all-powerful crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman.

Believed to be the last Da Vinci in private hands, Salvator Mundi commanded four times what Christie's had projected even as sceptics questioned its authenticity.

The newspaper said that the work will be lent or resold to museums, largely in the Middle East and Asia. The previous record was Pablo Picasso's Les Femmes d'Alger, which sold for $179 million.

Painted in oil on a wooden board measuring 18 by 26 inches, "Salvator Mundi" shows its subject gazing dreamily at the viewer, his right hand raised in benediction, while his left clutches a crystal orb.

Featuring a vast silver-toned dome, the Louvre Abu Dhabi was designed by French architect Jean Nouvel, drawing inspiration from Arab design and evoking both an open desert and the sea.

The first works on loan from the Louvre in Paris include another painting by Da Vinci - 'La Belle Ferronniere, ' one of his portraits of women.

The painting, the title of which means "Savior of the World" in English, was the most expensive painting ever sold at auction.

In 1958, it was sold at auction in London for $60, BBC reported.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER