Bankrupt airline has $1.5m art sale

Bankrupt Italian airline Alitalia SpA is seeking to raise at least $1.5m by auctioning off its art collection in December.

The Milan-based auction house Finarte Casa d'Aste SpA has been appointed to sell about_200_works, including a Gino Severini picture commissioned by the Rome-based airline for its Paris office in the 1950s, the Milan-based auction house, said in a press release.

The collection includes some 50 major works and 140 items of graphic art.

Alitalia's collection Italian modern art was built between the 1950s and the 1960s. The collection includes works on paper by Alberto Burri and Lucio Fontana.

Italy sold Alitalia's main flight business to a group of local investors in December for 1.5bn, including part of the carrier's debt.

Government appointed bankruptcy commissioner Augusto Fantozzi has been trying to sell unprofitable assets to repay creditors and a €300m state loan that was ruled illegal by the European Commission.

Air France KLM-Group bought a 25% stake in the new Alitalia in January.

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