According to a Los Angeles Times report, “The Lock”, a 1824 painting by John Constable, sold at auction for approximately $35 million. This marks a record breaking price for the artist who influenced the Barbizon movement and French impressionists. The painting previously hung in Madrid’s Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum but was put up for auction by Spain’s Baroness Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza. The Baroness is the widow of Swiss industrialist Baron Hans Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza who died in 2002 and left behind an impressive collection of art.
Reports note that the reasoning behind selling “The Lock” was financial. The Baroness told the El Pais newspaper, “It’s very painful for me, but there was no other way out. I need the money — I really need it. I have no liquidity.” Thyssen-Bornemisza added that the profits will also help the museum.
The painting’s buyer has remained anonymous.