Art & Culture

Frida Kahlo painting sells for over $8M

Anmar Frangoul | Special to
An Art specialist at Christie's speaks about Frida Kahlo's 'Dos desnudos en el bosque (La Tierra Misma)' on April 29, 2016, in New York.
Kena Betancur | AFP | Getty Images

A Frida Kahlo painting has sold for just over $8 million at auction, a world auction record for both Kahlo and Latin American artists.

Dos desnudos en el bosque (La tierra misma) was painted in 1939. Auction house Christie's said it was the first major work of Kahlo's to be auctioned in six years and described it as emitting a "strong, emotional pulse charged with a sense of longing and existential loneliness."

One of the most important artists of the 20th century, Kahlo, a Mexican, was born in 1907 and died in 1954.

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"We are particularly proud of the result achieved for Frida Kahlo's Dos desnudos en el bosque, which set the world auction record for the artist and became the highest price for any work by a Latin American artist," Brooke Lampley, head of Impressionist & Modern Art at Christie's New York, said in a statement.

Elsewhere in the New York sale, Claude Monet's Le basin aux nympheas sold for a little over $27 million.

Commenting on the art market in general, Katharine Arnold from Christie's told CNBC on Friday that it had "become a little bit more selective over time."

"We're seeing a flight to quality, effectively as long as the sales are edited and have very high quality material, things that are fresh to the market place, then sales are very robust," Arnold added.

Arnold went on to say that female artists were an interesting proposition.

"I think it's there's been some interesting trajectories, especially for female artists, I think female artists are still relatively undervalued," she said.