Guido Reni's The Assumption had lain in a private collection for more than 40 years before it was sold with impressive results at Koller Zurich's March 22 Old Masters sale.
The piece achieved an outstanding $1.2m in the Swiss city, realising its full potential after its previous owner failed to recognise the artist behind the work. The price represents a 9,900% increase on its high estimate of $126,500.
Guido Reni (1575-1642) was a high-baroque painter from Bologna, whose work was highly influenced by the likes of Caravaggio and Raphael.
The piece is painted on copper and depicts the assumption of Mary. An early work, it is typical of paintings created at the very beginning of Reni's career.
Reni's masterpiece was joined by 17 old master paintings from the villa of fashion designer Wolfgang Joop, 14 of which found new homes in the sale. The top lot among these was a piece by the so-called "Master of Frankfurt", a 15th century Flemish Renaissance painter known for his patrons from the German city.
So far, scholars have been unable to confirm the anonymous artist's name, though he is often thought to be Hendrik van Wueluwe, a similar artist working in Antwerp at the time. Allegory of Love, an oil on panel painted circa 1460, sold for $784,742.
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