An anonymous telephone bidder paid $85 million for a Francis Bacon triptych during a marathon series of live-streamed, online auctions held at Sotheby’s on Monday that could go a long way to bolstering confidence in the art market amid a global pandemic.

The trio of works from 1981 depicting a writhing man in agony, “Triptych Inspired by the Oresteia of Aeschylus,” had been expected to bring up to $80 million.


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