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Art World News

New York (CNN) — A pastel version of “The Scream” by Edvard Munch fetched nearly $120 million from an anonymous buyer Wednesday at Sotheby’s in New York, setting a new world record for a work of art sold at auction. Experts had expected the masterpiece to break new ground at the famed New York auction house; its presale estimate of at least $80 million was the highest ever listed at Sotheby’s. It sold for $119,922,500, which includes the premium paid to Sotheby’s. Previously, the most expensive artwork ever sold there was Pablo Picasso’s painting “Nude, Green Leaves, and Bust,” which brought in $106.5 million two years ago. The previous record for a Munch work of art was just over $38 million. The version of “The Scream” on the block Wednesday was one of four — two pastels and two paintings — executed between 1893 and 1910 and is one of the best-known images in modern art. It’s also the only version a private collector can get their hands on at public auction.