Encyclopedia  |   World Factbook  |   World Flags  |   Reference Tables  |   List of Lists     
   Academic Disciplines  |   Historical Timeline  |   Themed Timelines  |   Biographies  |   How-Tos     
Sponsor by The Tattoo Collection
List of most expensive paintings
Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

List of most expensive paintings

This is a list of the highest prices paid for paintings. Very valuable paintings, if sold, are usually sold at auction.

Most of the world's most famous paintings are owned by museums, who very rarely sell them once acquired. As such, they are quite literally priceless; if for some reason paintings like as the Mona Lisa were to become available, it is highly likely that they would sell for far higher values than the paintings listed below. The Guinness Book of Records lists the Mona Lisa as the most expensive object ever insured.

* Both paintings were bought by Japanese businessman Ryoei Saito. Mr. Saito threatened to have the Van Gogh painting cremated with him at his death. Saito, 75 years old at the time, the honorary chairman of Daishowa Paper Manufacturing Co., later stated "What I really wanted to (express)," he said, "was my wish to preserve the paintings forever." Saito, his aides explained, was using a figure of speech: threatening to torch the oils was just an expression of intense affection for the masterpieces. Later, Saito said he would consider giving the paintings to his government or a museum. Saito died in 1996. The fate of the painting is still a mystery.