Louise Bourgeois, Spider - Photo by Edouard Fraipont
Louise Bourgeois, Spider - Photo by Edouard Fraipont

$32.8M Bourgeois Spider Breaks Records At Sotheby’s

Louise Bourgeois’ Monumental Spider Sells For Record-Breaking $32.8 Million At Sotheby’s New York

New Auction Record For The Artist & For A Sculpture By A Woman Artist

“To bring a work as extraordinary as this to market will always be an honor, but to see it make both a record-breaking price for Louise Bourgeois and also become the most valuable sculpture ever made by a woman artist, is a truly special moment. Bourgeois’ Spiders are undoubtedly a real masterpiece of 20th-century art. Beloved across the globe, these powerful yet tender sculptures hold a commanding presence, one that was on full display in our galleries this season.”

Kelsey Leonard, Head of Sotheby’s Contemporary Evening Auction in New York (@Kelstheleonard

NEW YORK, 18 May 2023 – Moments ago in Sotheby’s New York saleroom, Louise Bourgeois’ monumental sculpture Spider sold for a record-breaking $32.8 million establishing a new record for the artist at auction and for a sculpture by a woman artist at auction*

Tonight’s sale marked the work’s debut at auction, after remaining in the prestigious collection of the Fundação Itaú in São Paulo for more than two decades. Proceeds from the sale will support the Fundação’s art and culture initiatives in Brazil.

At once beautiful and haunting, familiar and uncanny, Louise Bourgeois’ spell-binding Spiders stand among the most entrancing and ambitious artistic achievements of the twentieth century. An early and profoundly significant example of Bourgeois’ most iconic motif, this sculpture is one of just four monumental Spiders to ever appear at auction. The artist’s Spiders are represented globally in iconic public and private collections, from the looming iteration Maman, outside the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao and Tate Modern in London, to others at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), Dia Beacon, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, and many more prestigious institutions worldwide. Hailing from the apex of Bourgeois’ mature practice, the poignant series serves as a testament to the enduring appeal of the artist. Both universal and deeply personal, Bourgeois’ Spiders articulate the shared, complex experience of motherhood.  

Please see additional information on Spider attached. 

Tune in live as Sotheby’s Contemporary Evening Auction continues from New York, featuring works by Gerhard Richter, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and more. Follow Us on Twitter @Sothebys for live auction updates. 

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