Model of Picasso sculpture could sell for $35 million

AP Photo
AP Photo

CHICAGO (AP) - A model of Pablo Picasso's famed Chicago sculpture will be auctioned next month, and Christie's estimates it will sell for between $25 million and $35 million.

The late Spanish artist created the piece, named Tete, between 1962 and 1964. The iron and sheet metal model that goes to auction Nov. 4 in New York is 41 ½ inches tall and 27 ½ inches wide. It was later made into the 65-foot-tall, welded-iron sculpture unveiled Aug. 15, 1967, in Chicago's downtown Daley Plaza.

The sculpture is a top tourist attraction in the city, with children often playing on it in the summer and visitors debating what the enigmatic artwork depicts.

Christie's says Picasso saved the model that will be auctioned for himself and sent a duplicate to Chicago to be used to create the sculpture. Picasso gifted the duplicate to the Art Institute of Chicago, which hosted a show "Picasso and Chicago" earlier this year.

The piece is the top work of a larger auction of art, "A Dialogue Through Art: Words from The Jan Krugier Collection." The renowned art market dealer died in 2008, and the model comes from his estate. He received it from Picasso's granddaughter Marina Picasso.

Krugier represented many major artists, Christie's said, and became a foremost dealer of Picasso works. The auction also includes works by artists such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Paul Cezanne, Wassily Kandinsky, Henri Matisse, Georgia O'Keeffe and Henri Rousseau.

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