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Oprah Richer

Image via Getty
Image via Getty

Oprah Winfrey is $150 million or so richer (excluding taxes or whatever) after selling an immensely expensive 1912 painting. Good for her.


According to Bloomberg, Oprah made “one of the biggest private art deals of 2016" when she parted with a piece of artwork by Austrian artist Gustav Klimt for $150 million. The new owner of the painting is an unidentified, also wealthy, person from China.

The painting has a rich pre-Oprah history that dates back to World War II when it was found among other Nazi-stolen paintings. In 2006, the heirs of the subject of the painting reacquired it after a legal battle. Oprah has made a decent profit after buying the art, Page Six reports:

Already one of the world’s richest people with a net worth of $2.9 billion, Winfrey originally purchased the “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer” for $87.9 million at a Christie’s auction in 2006.

Klimt created the painting in 1912 and it depicts the wife of an art patron and industrialist in Vienna.


A source says Oprah loaned the painting to the Museum of Modern Art in 2014. Via Bloomberg:

While the Klimt was hanging at MOMA’s fifth-floor galleries last year, Winfrey was approached through Geffen by art dealer Larry Gagosian, who had a potential buyer lined up, said the person. Winfrey was willing to let it go for $150 million, according to the person.

Before she sold the work to an unidentified Chinese buyer during the summer, Winfrey agreed to temporarily lend it to Neue Galerie for the exhibition “Klimt and the Women of Vienna’s Golden Age, 1900–1918,” which ran from Sept. 22 to Jan. 16.

Congrats Oprah and can I borrow a dollar?

Culture Editor, Jezebel

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Nothing against Oprah- it’s her life. This is something that’s infuriating about this level of wealth. Obviously go Oprah, it’s your deal. However, it is just maddening that there is so much money being passed around that only benefits an individual or family. I don’t have the answer. Just hitting me hard with all that’s going on in this country. I’m not telling people how to spend their money or asking why they don’t give it all away- it just seems so sad with so much wealth so many families don’t even have money in the bank for emergencies.