When renowned conservator Dianne Dwyer Modestini completed her six-year restoration of Leonardo da Vinci's Salvator Mundi, she experienced feelings of withdrawal, depression and separation anxiety, almost like she was enduring a breakup.
“It was a very intense picture and I felt a whole slipstream of artistry and genius and some sort of otherworldliness that I’ll never experience again,” she told CNN about her experience in 2011.
Now up for sale, Salvator Mundi’s permanent owner won’t have to be concerned about a broken heart, but they will have to worry about coughing up a ton of cash to get it at a Christie's auction.
Crossing the block on November 15th, the oil painting of Jesus Christ — the title of which translates to “Savior of the World" — is believed to be Da Vinci’s last painting and one of the fewer than 20 he created during his lifetime. Originally hung in the collection of King Charles I, it was painted around the same time as the Mona Lisa and bears a likeness to that work.
Billed as a “painting of the most iconic figure in the world by the most important artist of all time,” the approximately 25" x 18" composition is expected to fetch up to $100 million.
“Who will buy it?” Christie’s postwar and contemporary art chairman Loic Gouzer asked Vogue. “Who knows. But there would be no Louvre without the Mona Lisa, and there would likely be no Paris without the Louvre …
If you’d like to make your town a landmark, here’s where to get info about the upcoming auction.