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Big bidding battle for bronze bust

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After prolonged bidding, Alberto Giacometti’s masterpiece sculpture, Buste d’homme (Diego au blouson), was sold for $14.3million (about R210m) by Sotheby’s at a New York sale late last year.

The auction house had estimated a final bid of $8m but fierce competition between seven collectors almost doubled its expectations.

Buste d’homme (Diego au blouson) is a bronze bust of the acclaimed Swiss sculptor’s brother, Diego, and the title means “Male bust – Diego in jacket”.

The work, which had been in the same private collection since 1987, was sculpted in the late 1940s when the majority of Giacometti’s most sought-after works were created.

Mainly based in Paris, Giacometti – who died in his homeland in 1966 – is best known for his attenuated sculptures of solitary figures and has been compared to existentialists in literature. 

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