A Norman Rockwell painting entitled “Saying Grace” sold for $46 million in an auction at Sotheby’s on Wednesday, a record price for a single work by an American painter, the Associated Press reports.
Two people attempted to outbid one another on the telephone during the nine-minute sale. The buyer’s identity wasn’t disclosed. Before the auction, the painting was estimated to be worth $15 million to $20 million. Rockwell was originally paid $3,500 for “Saying Grace,” which appeared on the cover of Saturday Evening Post in 1951.
The previous record for most expensive American painting was held by George Bellows whose “Polo Crowd” sold for $27.7 million in 1999.