Another day and another record broken. Just about one meter tall and worth $91 million. That is the price that was paid for a metal bunny by US artist Jeff Koons. Never has a work by a living artist been worth so much.
It is the work “Rabbit” from the year 1986, as the auction house Christie’s announced on Wednesday evening. The approximately one meter tall sculpture made of stainless steel had previously been estimated at 50 to 70 million dollars. The winning bid was awarded to the art dealer Robert E. Mnuchin, father of US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
The record was last held by a painting by the British painter David Hockney. “Portrait of an Artist (Pool with two figures)” was auctioned in November, also at Christie’s in New York, for about 90.3 million dollars. Previously, Koons’s “Balloon Dog (Orange)” sculpture had held the record for years: it had been auctioned at auction in New York in 2013 for $ 58.4 million.
The 1.04 meter high steel sculpture “Rabbit” is one of the most famous works by Koons. It was in the the collection US publisher Samuel Irving Newhouse who had passed in 2017. He owned the publishing house Condé Nast, which publishes the magazines Vanity Fair, Vogue, and The New Yorker.