Freud's 'black eye' hits £2.8m

The 'most important self-depiction ever to appear at auction' sold for £2,841,250 at Sotheby's, last week.

At least that's how the London auction house described Lucian Freud's Self-Portrait With a Black Eye.

Freud's Self-Portrait With a Black Eye

The painting sold after remaining unknown and unseen in public for three decades. For over 30 years it sat in the same private collection, unrecorded in Freud lore.

Equally remarkable are the circumstances behind the unusual masterpiece's creation.

The portrait's eponymous 'black eye' was reportedly the aftermath of a fight between Freud and a taxi driver.

Freud was in his late 50s when the painting was produced.

Today, he is 87 and has been described by the art expert Robert Hughes as "the greatest living realist painter".

Top lot at the Sotheby's sale went to Willem De Kooning. His Untitled XIV brought £4m.


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