• Henley DFAS

The World’s Most Expensive Art - Where Leonardo Meets Picasso

Thursday 15th October 2020 Online at 2.30pm
Ian Swankie

In the last few years the top end of the art market has flourished beyond all expectation, and collectors have been prepared to pay astonishing amounts to own a modern masterpiece.

                                                            Amedeo Modigliani Nu couché (sur le côté gauche)

This lecture is about the works that have sold for over $100 million and is an excuse to examine some beautiful and varied art. These works would not achieve such sky-high prices if they were no good.

(Please click on the blue print above to continue reading)

             Pablo Picasso                                      Paul Cézanne                             Leonardo da Vinci                   Gustav Klimt               Nude, Green Leaves and Bust                     The Card Players                            Salvator Mundi      Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I    

So, we’ll see some wonderful paintings including works by Picasso, Cezanne, Leonardo, Rembrandt, Modigliani, Klimt, Bacon and Pollock, all held together by the common thread of their extraordinary commercial value. But we will also look at the buyers and sellers, the stories behind the works, the reasons for changing hands and I will try to answer the question “Are they really worth hundreds of millions of pounds?”


A Londoner with a passion for art and architecture, Ian is an official guide at Tate Modern, Tate Britain, Guildhall Art Gallery and St Paul’s Cathedral, and gives tours around each venue. He is also a qualified and active freelance London guide and leads regular tours for various corporations and organisations. Since 2012 he has led a popular weekly independent art lecture group in his home town of Richmond in West London. He is a Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Art Scholars, one of the City Livery Companies.