Run time: 96 mins
The seedier dealings and politics of the art world are on full display in this thrilling documentary surrounding the most expensive painting ever sold.
Around the turn of the 20th century, a painting was discovered called Salvator Mundi. To some experts it is the definitive work of the great master Leonardo Da Vinci while to others it was executed by another hand at another time. Its initial price was a mere $1175 but in a dramatic auction at Christie’s in 2015, an anonymous bidder paid a staggering $450 million for a painting they believed to be a Lost Leonardo.
Given who is alleged to have painted this work, the question at the centre of a film like this would normally concern the truth behind its origin. Instead, director Andreas Koefoed delivers a much more complex and revealing narrative about the painting’s sales and the mystery of where it is today.
There are those who prize historic, potentially priceless artworks like this one simply as financial assets or status symbols. This is a story about the intersection between art, history, power, greed and the desire to possess something rare just to own it.