A Diego Rivera painting set a record Wednesday night for the highest price paid at auction for a Latin American artwork, fetching US$9.76 million and taking the honor away from his partner Frida Kahlo.
The colourful painting entitled “Los Rivales” (The Rivals) and sold by Christie’s depicts two men at a traditional Mexican celebration.
Until now the record was held by a Kahlo work auctioned in 2016 for US$8 million. The 1939 painting is called “Dos desnudos en el bosque (La tierra misma)”, which translates as “Two Nudes in the Forest (The Earth Itself)”.
A Rivera work also holds the record for most paid ever for a Latin American piece of art, not just at auction.
That work, which the Mexican artist completed in 1928, went to a private Argentine collector, Eduardo Constantini, for US$15.7 million in 2016. It was entitled “Baile en Tehuantepec”. Baile means dance.
The website ARTnews said “The Rivals” went to an unnamed collector bidding by phone.