Modigliani Painting Expected To Fetch $8 Million in Israel — But the Piece Won't Be Present

Image: Haaretz

A masterpiece by Italian Jewish artist Amadeo Modigliani, estimated to be worth NIS 30 million (8.25 million dollars), will be offered at public auction in Israel in the coming weeks. It is the most expensive painting ever to be auctioned in Israel. But the painting itself won’t be making an appearance.

Modigliani’s painting is one of 91 works to be shown in Israel in photographs and on film. The Israeli Tax Authority is demanding 18 percent value added tax for the entry of each item into Israel. To avoid the tax, the original paintings will stay in New York, making the U.S. Department of the Treasury the beneficiary of the taxes on their sale.

The Modigliani, called “Portrait de Anne Bjarne” (oil on canvas, 65 x 100 cm), was painted in 1919 and comes from the private collection of millionaire Meshulam Riklis. It is one of 415 works offered for international sale by Matsart Auctioneers and Appraisers. Some of the revenues will be donated by the Israel Dignity Fund, headed by Tali Riklis, for art workshops for disabled Israel Defense Forces soldiers at Beit Halohem veterans’ rehabilitation centers.

To date, three people have expressed interest in the Modigliani – an Israeli, a Spaniard and a Chinese national. They are expected to fly to New York to examine the painting up close.


Written by


Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Modigliani Painting Expected To Fetch $8 Million in Israel — But the Piece Won't Be Present

Thank you!

This article has been sent!