Warhol Self-Portrait Fetches Record $38.4M
Private bidder prevails after 'longest lot in history'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 12, 2011 2:12 AM CDT
Andy Warhol's “Self-Portrait” was sold at auction by Christie’s in New York on Wednesday, May 11, 2011 for $38.4 million.   (AP Photo/Christie’s Auction House)

(Newser) – A private European collector walked off with Andy Warhol's very first self-portrait after a 16-minute bidding war at Christie's Wednesday night. The 1963-64 work sold for $38.44 million after two competing bidders kept raising their price in increments of $100,000, causing Christie’s auctioneer to call it the “longest lot in history," reports Forbes.

The eight Warhols on sale at the auction took in a total of $91 million. Self-Portrait, sold by the family of Detroit collector Florence Barron, who commissioned the work for $1,600, broke the record for a Warhol portrait. "I really believe my mother-in-law would have been ecstatic," Nora Barron told Reuters after the sale. "She loved the picture, she loved Andy and I truly believe she would have loved tonight."