Gustav Klimt's Bildnis Gertrud Loew leads June 24 sale

Gustav Klimt's Portrait of Bildnis Gertrud Loew (1902) realised £24.7m ($39.1m) in a sale at Sotheby's London on June 24.

The lot headlined a major auction of impressionist and modern art, beating an estimate of £18m ($28.4m) by 37.2%.

Klimt Getrud Sothebys
Klimt is among the most celebrated painters of all time

Helena Newman, co-head of impressionist and modern art at Sotheby's, explained in the run up to the sale: "Gustav Klimt's exquisite and ingenious representations of women have led to him become the most celebrated painter of the female portrait of the early 20th Century.

"Bildnis Gertrud Loew, from a crucial period in the artist's career, is one his finest portraits to appear at auction in over twenty years."

The record for a work by Klimt stands at $135m, set for his iconic portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I in a private sale in 2006.

Kazimir Malevich's Suprematism, 18th Construction also sold well - achieving £21.4m ($33.6m).

The work was shown in Malevich's celebrated 0.10 exhibition in Petrograd (Saint Petersburg) in 1915.

The show introduced the world to Suprematism, a movement started by Malevich, which distilled art down to simple geometric shapes and colours.

Malevich is best known for Black Square, a painting that acted as a founding statement for the movement.  

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