Iconic Painting Sells for Record $119.9 Million

May 3, 2012 Updated May 3, 2012 at 2:45 PM EDT

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Iconic Painting Sells for Record $119.9 Million

May 3, 2012 Updated May 3, 2012 at 2:45 PM EDT

(Sotheby's news release) Auction history was made at Sotheby’s Wednesday night when Edvard Munch’s iconic masterpiece The Scream sold for $119,922,500 in New York, marking a new world record for any work of art at auction.

According to a news release from Sotheby's:

A group of at least eight bidders jumped into the competition, but it was a prolonged battle between two highly determined phone bidders that carried the final selling price to its historic
level, after more than 12 minutes.

Simon Shaw, Senior Vice President and Head of Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art department in New York, said: “If ever there was a work of art of true shock and awe it is Edvard Munch’s The Scream, which is not only one of the seminal images from art history, but also one of the visual keys to the modern consciousness. We are delighted to say that this magnificent picture achieved a new world record at Sotheby’s for any work of art when it sold for $119.9 million after an enthusiastic bidding battle involving at least eight bidders which lasted for more than 12 minutes.

Read the entire Sotheby's news release HERE.