The most expensive paintings ever sold in the world

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images,

The wealth of nations can often be found be traced back to its art, which are gradually becoming a staple in the investment portfolios of the super rich.

Cost information website, How Much, has put together these maps of the most expensive artworks across the world.

The map reveals that Europe makes up a majority of the world’s most expensive paintings with a Picasso oil painting from 1955 “Les femmes d’Alger (Version ‘O’)” smashing the record for most expensive piece of artwork ever sold when it fetched $179.4 million at Christie’s earlier this year.

Before that, Francis Bacon’s triptych “Three Studies of Lucian Freud,” held the number top spot when it sold for $142.4 million at auction in November 2013.

One of the most expensive artworks in Australia is a Brett Whiteley painting “My Armchair”, depicting the interior view of the artist’s Lavendar Bay home overlooking the Sydney Harbour, and purchased for $3,927,272 at auction in 2013.

Here are the most expensive paintings ever sold on each continent:

In North America, the most expensive art work was by American artist Andy Warhol whose 'Silver Car Crash' piece last sold for over $105 million.


One of the most expensive artworks in Asia was by Zhang Daqian who painted 'Lotus and Mandarin Ducks', now worth $24.5 million. Russian artist Kazemir Malevich holds the record for the priciest artwork in Asia with his 1916 abstract piece 'Suprematist Composition'.


Europe holds most of the world's most expensive artworks including Francis Beacon's famous 'Three Studies of Lucian Freud' worth more than $142 including French artist Claude Monet's 'Le Bassin aux Nymphéas', which was last purchased for $80.5 million.


One of the most expensive paintings in Australia is Brett Whiteley's 1976 oil-on-canvas 'My Armchair' of the artist's apartment near Sydney Harbour. Sidney Nolan's 1946 Ned Kelly work 'First-Class Marksman' currently holds the record price for an Australian painting worth $5.4 million.


The most expensive piece of art produced in South America belongs to Roberto Matta’s 'La Révolte des Contraires', now worth $5 million. Matta’s painting is followed closely by Lygia Clark of Brazil’s painting called 'Contra Relevo (Objeto N. 7)', which is worth $2.2 million.


Now read: The 17 Most Expensive Paintings Ever Sold

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