Friday, April 13, 2012

Top 10 Most Expensive Paintings Ever Sold

We are completely amazed by the amounts of money art-lovers and collectors would pay to own a unique piece of art and call it theirs. We are aware of the fact that these carry a huge value behind them and should probably cost even more, although we wouldn’t consider them as sellable items.

In the following article, we’d like to point out the 10 most expensive paintings ever to be purchased. They range from extremely well known artists to more obscure ones, and from privately sold ones to others that were purchased from famous auctions.

On terms that aren’t related to us, the sums may differ, but we’ll present the official numbers for which the pieces of artwork were each sold, and not taking in consideration any supplementary inflation or estimation values. Now, take a look at these top 10 most expensive paintings in the world...

10. Bal Au Moulin De La Galette, Montmartre

Painted by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, it was sold to Ryoei Saito for $78.1 million dollars during the 1990s. This painting was then sold to an undisclosed private collector. It describes a particular area of Montmartre and features faces that apparently were important to the artist. Estelle, the sister of one of Renoir’s models, is presumed to be the girl wearing a striped dress, while the dancing couple would be represented by Margot, one of Renoir’s models, and Cardensa, Cuban artist.

9. False Start

This particular piece was bought by Kenneth Griffin for a staggering $80 million. Painted by Jasper Johns, it was originally sold anonymously, the name of the buyer being made public after some time the painting spent at Matthew Marks Gallery. The artist belongs to a contemporary current, the painting being finished in 1959, and is currently considered a major influence on the nascent pop art movement. The interesting feature of this piece is the fact that colors are used as words, being painted in different colors than what they actually mean, this attitude being called by some to be “utilitarian”. So, the word “red” is painted in orange, white in red, orange in white and so on.

8. Portrait of Dr. Gachet

The art-work was painted by Vincent Van Gogh, one of the most renowned of all times. It was purchased by a Japanese businessman, Ryoei Saito, for the sum of $82.5 million in 1990. He placed the piece in a climate-controlled vault after purchase. Three years after buying it, the Saito was charged with bribery and received a three-year sentence. By that time, he was almost bankrupt. In an excess of selfishness, he said that the painted was to be cremated and buried with him, statement that was later infirmed as to be a joke. The businessman died in 1996, the current location of the painting being unknown.

7. Triptych 1976

The famous Roman Abramovich bought this piece for $86.3 million, on the advice of Daria Zhukova, his girlfriend. Painted by Francis Bacon, the artwork wreaks of macabre. It’s one of the pieces he painted after his lover committed suicide. With influences from Greek mythology, mainly the story of Prometheus, it can also be considered an interpretation of The Orestia, Aeschylus’ trilogy. The painting was displayed in Russia in 2010, in Moscow, at the CCC Gallery.

6. Adele Bloch-Bauer II

Gustav Klimt finished it in 1912, the work being considered a fine proof of the Symbolist Movement. The girl the painting was named after was the only model that the artist painted more than twice. Sold for $87.9 million to an undisclosed buyer, the painting was commissioned by Ferdinand Bloch-Bauer, Adele’s wealthy husband and then donated to the Austrian State Gallery within the 1920s. It was later seized by the Nazis during the Second World War. The descendants of the Bloch-Bauer family had been returned five of Klimt’s paintings after long lawsuits. They have auctioned them all, and now this painting’s whereabouts are unknown.

5. Dora Maar Au Chat

It’s finally time for a Picasso. Pablo Picasso is the author of the weird piece and represents one of his favorite muses, being involved with her in a passionate relationship between the 1930s and 40s. Bought buy an unknown customer for $95.2 million, this incredible piece of art was finished in 1941, in the middle of the Nazi occupation of France. Dora Maar used to be a native Parisian, but grew up in Argentina. That’s how she could easily get along with Picasso, both speaking Spanish. As a proof of the reverence for his lover, he took extreme care while realizing it, with immense attention to detail. The artwork went to private display at auction in 2006 after being privately held during the early 21st century.

4. Garcon A La Pipe

The second Picasso-signed painting in our top 10 was bought by another undisclosed customer for $104.1 million. It owns the record for the most expensive painting ever sold at an auction. Finished when Picasso was only 24 years old, in 1905, during the artist’s “Rose” period, the painting emanates an androgynous quality, contrasting between the pipe and the flowers. Even though many art critics say that the price was way too much for its actual value, it finally got sold, in spite of their opinion.

3. Adele Bloch-Bauer I

We’re now penetrating the top 3 with another Gustav Klimt piece, sold for a mind-boggling $135 million to Ronald Lauder, cosmetics magnate. The reason for which he bought it was the desire to collect Jewish-owned artworks rescued from the Nazis, displaying them in his Neue Galerie in New York, where it currently resides. The painting consists of gold, oil and silver on canvas and was the most expensive painting ever sold for a short time.

2.  Woman III

The work of Willem de Kooning joined Steven A. Cohen’s collection of artwork at a cost of $137.5 million. It’s the only de Kooning painting owned privately, bought from David Geffen in November 2006. The artist numbered his whole series of “Woman” paintings, 6 in number – a superb example of abstract expressionism, finished in 1953. He was declared the leader of the movement at that time, but passed away in 1997 after a long Alzheimer’s Disease-dominated period.

1. No. 5, 1948

The most expensive painting ever to be sold is Jackson Pollock’s No. 5, 1948, based on his famous “drip” style. Bought by David Martinez for a whopping $140 million, it’s the piece that proves contemporary-style is currently the most wanted within the high-class society. Although the owner is unconfirmed, just as the sum, they haven’t been disproven by anyone or anything. It was brokered by Tobias Meyer, Sotheby’s auctioneer, as a private sale. The seller was David Geffen, renowned for his private collection of artworks.

Awesome Out Of Bounds Photography

Photoshop has mad the impossible possible. Have you ever imagined the photos coming out of the frame. well! Here we have collected some amazing photos form various designers that is popping out of the bond which gives a 3D effect. Now have a look at these awesome Photoshopped pictures...

Top 10 Most Expensive Vehicles of U.S. Military

Transportation is one of the key feature that is essential in any military. For a country like U.S. which is considered as one of the super power, it does matter a lot. And no doubt that the U.S. government will invest a huge amount in it.

No other country on earth has a larger defense budget than the United States. According to the Department of Defense, its base budget for fiscal year 2010 is over $500 billion, with another $130 billion to bolster the War on Terrorism and another $33 billion in supplemental spending on top of that. And that's not to mention Homeland Security or nuclear arsenal maintenance.

A lot of this money is spent on aircraft, tanks and ships, all of which are top of line and represent the furthest advances in military technology. In other words, they cost a lot of money. So, let's take a look at these top 10 most expensive vehicles of U.S. Military.

1. Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit [ LINK ]

The Northrop Grumman B-2 Spirit, better known as the Stealth Bomber, can launch conventional and nuclear weapons against the most heavily protected enemy lines on earth thanks to its ability to evade radar detection. Originally, it was supposed to be manufactured in a run of 132, but it was so expensive that the initial 1987 order was slashed to 21.

The cost of the B-2 program in 1997 was $737 million, or just over $1 billion today. Combined with procurement costs, the B-2 Spirit costs over $2 billion. The craft was first used during the Kosovo War in 1999, and it has been used successfully in Iraq and Afghanistan as well. They have also been used during the 2011 Libyan uprising, according to the BBC.

2. Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey

The Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey is a versatile aircraft with vertical takeoff and landing capabilities similar to those of a helicopter. However, it's much faster than any existing chopper and it can fly at speeds as high as those of conventional turboprop airplanes. It was first used for combat in 2007 in Iraq, and the Marine Corps intends to use them in Afghanistan by late 2011. Unfortunately, the Osprey was plagued by a series of accidents during its design and testing phase between 1991 and 2000, and during that period the aircraft was involved in multiple accidents that caused thirty fatalities. Since 2008, the Osprey program has cost $27 billion, and as of 2010, each unit has cost $67 million.

3. USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77)

Named for World War II veteran and former President of the United States, George H. W. Bush, the USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) is the final Nimitz super carrier to be produced for the US Navy. It was commissioned in 2001 and built by Northrop Grumman for a cost of $6.2 billion.

The carrier was completed in 2009, and is docked in Virginia. At almost 1,100 feet in length, it's one of the longest warships in the world. Its top speed is over 30 knots, which it reaches with the help of two on board nuclear reactors. This power source is capable of keeping the ship running for more than twenty years without once having to refuel.

4. Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II

The F-35 Lightning II was developed as part of a joint program between the US, the UK and other allies known as the Joint Strike Fighter program. It was developed for use in air, ground and reconnaissance missions, it has a wingspan of 35 feet and a length of over 51 feet. Its internal fuel capacity is over 18,000 pounds and it can reach speeds of 1,200 miles per hour.

The F-35 Lightning II is armed with a 4-barreled Gatling cannon and eight types of missiles, and if all else fails, it also has a B61 nuclear bomb. The cost for one aircraft is $122 million. The US plans to purchase over 2,000 units, at a cost of $323 billion. When this deal was cut in 2001, it made Lockheed Martin the recipient of the largest military contract in history.

5. McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet

The F/A-18 Hornet was introduced by McDonnell Douglas and is manufactured by Boeing, who acquired the company in 1997. After making it maiden voyage in 1978, it was introduced in 1983 and since then, it has been used in a variety of capacities. It was used in Operation Desert Storm, and it’s the featured aircraft of the Blue Angels, the U.S. Navy’s Flight Demonstration Squadron. However, its primary functions are reconnaissance and air support.

The Hornet can reach a maximum speed of 1190 miles per hour, and it can climb up to 50,000 feet in a minute. Outside of the US, the fighter is used by the armed forces of such countries as Australia, Canada and Switzerland, and it has appeared in the 1996 science fiction film Independence Day as the aircraft used to defeat the alien menace. A 2006 report by the US Navy estimated that the cost of one unit is $57 million.

6. Boeing EA-18G Growler

The Boeing EA-18G Growler is a carrier-based fighter used for electronic warfare. It can disrupt radar and jam an enemy communication system with electromagnetic radiation and directed-energy weapons. Because of its use as an electronic warfare fighter, it carries no guns, although it carries missiles for self-defense.

The Growler is a modified version of the F/A-18F Super Hornet, and it’s relatively new; it went into production in 2007 and only began operating in September 2009. The aircraft has a wingspan of over 44 feet and a length of over 60 feet. According to the US Navy, it costs $67 million to manufacture a single unit.

7. Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle

The Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle had its fifteen minutes of fame when 2008 presidential candidate John McCain cited the amphibious assault vehicle as the basis for a costly program that was wasting billions of taxpayer dollars. Developed for the US Marine Corps, it is deployed at sea and transports a full marine rifle squad to shore, then operates on land with the full capabilities of a tank.

The Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle is manufactured by General Dynamics, and the cost for each unit is over $22 million. To date, the program, which is expected to be complete in 2015, has a project cost of $15 billion, $3 billion of which has already been spent. The Bowles-Simpson Commission has recommended that the program be cancelled, and Secretary of Defense Gates said in January 2011 that he believes the program should end.

8. Grumman E-2D Advanced Hawkeye

The E-2 Hawkeye is an airborne early warning aircraft that dates back to the 1960s. It has been upgraded to the E-2B and E-2C models when advances were made to its radar and communications capabilities, but the most recent model, the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, is the most sophisticated yet. It features a new radar system that triples the craft’s ability to monitor territory.

The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, which took its first flight in 2007, costs $232 million to produce. It features a brand new avionics suite, complete with satellite communications capability, and the capability for midair refueling. According to Northrup Grumman, the aircraft began delivery to the US Navy in 2010.

9. Boeing C-17 Globemaster III

The C17A Globemaster III is a military transport aircraft in operation since 1993. The plane, which can drop over 100 paratroopers into a war zone at one time, has been used to move troops into Iraq and Afghanistan, and has also been used to deliver humanitarian aid and perform medical evacuations.

The price for one unit is $191 million. McDonnell Douglas developed it during the 1980s for strategic and tactical airlift, and it’s used by the militaries of the U . K . and Canada, as well as by NATO. Both the United Arab Emirates and India are planning to use the aircraft as well.

10. Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor

According to its manufacturer, Lockheed Martin, the F-22 Raptor is the best combat aircraft on earth. While this might seem tantamount to saying your son is brilliant, one look at the aircraft’s capabilities actually bears out the manufacturer’s statement. It can break the sound barrier, it can avoid detection by radar and it can shoot down cruise missiles.

Unfortunately, an Air Force budget document estimated that one unit costs $150 million, with an overall program cost of $65 billion. The high price inspired the Defense Department to call for the program’s end in 2009. The Senate voted to end it in July of that year, and when the military policy bill was signed into law three months later, funding for further production of the F-22 had been cut.