Record-breaking Leonardo painting goes to Louvre Abu Dhabi

Record-breaking Leonardo painting goes to Louvre Abu Dhabi

A friend of Saudi Arabia's powerful crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was the mystery buyer of "Salvator Mundi", a painting of Christ by Leonardo Da Vinci that recently sold for a record $450 million.

The painting is expected to arrive at the Louvre in Abu Dhabi, a museum in the United Arab Emirates.

The New York Times reported that the victor of the sale at Christie's on November 15 was a Saudi prince, Bader bin Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan al-Saud, citing documents provided to the newspaper from inside Saudi Arabia.

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.

The announcement only partially resolves the mystery over the painting's sale last month in NY for $450.3m, with auction house Christie's steadfastly declining to identify the buyer.

"Salvator Mundi", an ethereal portrait of Jesus Christ which dates to about 1500, the last privately owned Leonardo da Vinci painting, is on display for the media at Christie's auction in New York, NY, U.S., October 10, 2017. This is the highest price ever paid for a work of art. Christie's said the identity of the buyer has been the most sought-after secret in the art world and beyond. The crown prince of Saudi Arabia and his counterpart in Abu Dhabi enjoy a close working relationship and on 5 December their countries announced the formation of a Joint Cooperation Committee to formalise existing collaboration on military, political, economic and cultural matters.

The NBA's Top Pick Has Been Traded
Others think that he’ll continue to use the picks himself and construct a young core that can emerge after the Cavaliers vs. Fultz is an ideal scoring guard to run alongside him, and can also take over point guard duties if the Simmons experiment fails.

He is a board member of Energy Holdings International, an energy company with business in Middle East, Asia and Americas.

The museum opened with some 600 pieces including items from early Mesopotamia. Under a 30-year agreement, France provides expertise, lends works of art and organises exhibitions in return for one billion euros ($1.16bn).

During last month's auction, Salvator Mundi or Savior of the World was described by Alan Wintermute, a spokesperson for Christie's auction house, as the greatest art discovery of the 21 century.

It is one of fewer than 20 paintings generally accepted as being from the Renaissance master's own hand, according to Christie's.

It had sold for a mere 45 British pounds in 1958, when the painting was thought to have been a copy, and was lost until it resurfaced at a regional auction in 2005.

The painting was later sold by Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev, who bought it in 2013 for $US127.5 million in a private sale that became the subject of a continuing lawsuit.

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