Pablo Picasso's L’Homme au Gibus snapped for £83
It’s a Christmas miracle (of sorts). A 25-year-old American man is now the proud owner of an original work of art by the great twentieth century artist Pablo Picasso. He secured the painting L’Homme au Gibus (Man with Opera Hat) for just tuppence, a cool £83 to be exact. It is worth $1 million (£610,000).
Call it magic, but it was simply a matter of luck that resulted in Jeffrey Gonano bagging this delightful work of art. He was simply looking for something to hang on his living room wall and upon reading an article about an upcoming online raffle by Sotheby’s in Paris, thought ‘why the hell not?”.
He snapped up one of the 50,000 tickets issued by the auction house, which were priced at 100 euros (£83) and then waited like everyone else for his name to be called. A contradiction of outcome arises in such a situation because no-one really expects to ever win, nor do they want to lose. It’s always a curious position to be in.
The project manager at a fire sprinkler firm in Pennsylvania was keen for a work of art to improve the ambience of his home, though he’s certainly now in a position to transform it into an exhilarating space. It’s funny how a work of art can do that.
Picasso’s cubist painting, which distorts the self-explanatory titled work into a melange of recognisable shapes and forms, had originally been bought by an anonymous donor from a New York gallery and then donated to a charity to help it raise money to save the ancient city of Tyre in southern Lebanon.
The idea for the tombola was first mooted by Picasso’s grandson Olivier. He thought it a more novel and contemporary way to raise funds for an all-important cause, while also attracting people from all over the world to participate in a life-changing event for the recipient of the painting, as well as all those who will benefit from all subsequent charitable efforts.
According to Olivier, the gouache is a very important work of art “very important drawing because it first stands witness to the cubist work carried out by my grandfather”. He added: “I think that Pablo Picasso was a pioneer, pioneer in his personal life, in his sentimental life, in his creation.”
The charity, the International Association to Save Tyre, was founded in 1980 at the UNESCO Paris, is committed to pumping investment into the city to ensure that its heritage is preserved.
Cadogan Tate can ship works of art from your current location to your chosen destination anywhere in the world.