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Andy Warhol sale breaks record as Steven A. Cohen unloads art

An Andy Warhol work depicting a gruesome car crash has sold for $105.4 million at auction, a record amount for the pop artist. The sale was made Wednesday evening at a Sotheby's auction of contemporary art in New York.

The auction also featured the sale of art owned by Steven A. Cohen, the hedge fund billionaire who heads SAC Capital Advisors. The Connecticut hedge fund recently plead guilty to insider trading and faces $1.8 billion in penalties as part of a deal with the government.

Warhol's "Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster)" was created by Warhol in 1963 as part of a series. It is the only one in the series that isn't currently in a museum, said the auction house. The piece is a two-panel work that depicts a man slumped over the steering wheel of a vehicle.

ART: Can you guess the high price?

The $105.4-million selling price far exceeded the Sotheby's estimate of $60 million to $80 million.  

Wednesday's auction brought in a total of $380.6 million. Among the items for sale were six pieces owned by Cohen, which sold for a total of about $77 million. 

He got $26.5 million for a 1986 painting by Gerhard Richter titled "A.B. Courbet" and $10.9 million for a Brice Marden painting titled "The Attended." A Warhol piece he owned titled "Liz #1 (Early Colored Liz)" sold for $20.3 million.

Cohen sits on the board of Los Angeles' Museum of Contemporary Art. He hasn't been charged in the SAC Capital insider-trading case.


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