Da Vinci heads for ‘Louvre’
Salvator Mundi, a painting of Christ by Leonardo Da Vinci that recently sold for a record $450 million (R6.1 billion), is heading to the Louvre Abu Dhabi in a coup for the bold new museum, it announced on Wednesday.
The move became possible after a little-known Saudi prince reportedly bought the painting last month.
The Louvre Abu Dhabi, the first museum to bear the Louvre name outside France, has been billed as “the first universal museum in the Arab world”, in a sign of the oilrich emirate’s global ambitions.
“Da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi is coming to #LouvreAbuDhabi,” the museum said on Twitter in Arabic, English and French.
The post displayed an image of the 500-year-old work but did not identify its owner.
Auction house Christie’s has also steadfastly declined to identify the buyer, whose purchase in New York stunned the art world.
“Congratulations,” Christie’s said in a tweeted reply.
The New York Times identified the buyer as Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan al-Saud. – AFP