By Deirdre Tynan • 25 June 2021 • 15:34
An original painting by David Bowie.
Image: Cowley Abbott
A painting by David Bowie bought for just £3.37 in a second-hand shop in a remote part of Canada has sold for more than £63,000. It was initially thought it might sell for up to £10,000 in auction.
Auctioneer Cowley Abbott said the painting was purchased for $4.09 (£3.37) from a donation centre in South River, Ontario, when the acrylic and collage work was later discovered to have been painted by Bowie in 1997.
The auction house said the painting, titled D Head XLVI, is part of a series the singer created between 1994 and 1997.
“D Head XLVI was found in the most unexpected place: a donation centre for household goods in South River, Ontario. The chance discovery of this treasure within a pile of discarded goods is quite remarkable. The consignor of the painting was astonished upon viewing a label which read “David Bowie” and realising it was the signature of the artist inscribed on the reverse. After conducting thorough research, which included correspondence with a David Bowie specialist in the United Kingdom, we were able to confirm that the painting is indeed by the famous artist and part of a series that he completed in the 1990s,” the auction house said.
“Between 1995 and 1997 Bowie created a series of approximately 47 works on canvas which he entitled Dead Heads (or D Head). Each title included a non-sequential Roman numeral. The sitters ranged from band members, friends and acquaintances and there were also some self-portraits. It has been suggested that, for some of these important paintings, Bowie drew inspiration from the Ziggy Stardust era. With long hair and a pronounced profile, this energetic and enigmatic portrait is truly a rare representation from a celebrated artist,” the auction house added in the painting’s online listing.
The painting was sold as part of Cowley Abbott’s International Art Online Auction.
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Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.
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