Sotheby's has announced the highlights of its forthcoming spring Evening Sale of Impressionist and Modern Art, with seven decades of Picasso works led by Tete de Marie-Therese.
With Picasso a bellwether for the impressionist art market, Sotheby's will offer 14 works spanning the artist's career on May 7 in New York, ranging from an early drawing dating to 1900 through to a late oil painting from 1969.
Tete de Marie-Therese, a portrait of his beloved mistress - dubbed the Golden Muse - will auction with a $15m-20m estimate. Painted in the early 1930s, it is one of the "most painterly and expressive" of Picasso's portraits of Marie-Therese, which are among the most sought after of his works.
The work comes from the collection of Picasso's second wife, Jacqueline Roque, who donated it to William Rubin, director of painting and sculpture at the New York Museum of Modern Art.
Also starring in the sale is La Place, Alberto Giacometti's first multi-figural sculpture, which is estimated at $12m-18m.
The sale follows on from Sotheby's $50m sale of Grande tete mince (Grande tete de Diego), which was the highest price achieved for any impressionist work of art at auction in 2013.
With Giacometti and Picasso present, the auction would be lacking without a work from Claude Monet. He is represented by three impressive canvases in the sale, including Le pont japonais, a 1918-1924 painting of the Japanese bridge that spans the lily pond of his famously lush garden in Giverny.
The work is estimate at $12-18m, and stands as a fantastic example of his late oeuvre. It can be seen in a photograph of the artist at his studio alongside some of his most noted pieces.