ART

2 Chainz Thinks a $450.3 Million da Vinci Could Be Fake

The charismatic rap star had a fun-filled day at Christie's, but did question the legitimacy of a certain expensive piece

Late last year, 2 Chainz made a visit to Christie’s New York to promote his new TV show ‘Most Expensivest’. When the charismatic rapper was standing in the shadow of Salvator Mundi by Leonardo da Vinci (which would sell the next day for $450 million), he weighed in on its authenticity.

‘Most Expensivest’ is a new TV show airing on Viceland, reviewing some of the most expensive and lavish things in the world. So in true 2 Chainz style, he made a beeline for Christie’s New York, on the night before its much hyped postwar and contemporary art sale.

Met by Christie’s Vice President and specialist in postwar and contemporary art, Ana Maria Celis, 2 Chainz strolled through in a Supreme hoodie, red and white track pants and Balenciaga sneakers. The New York Times says “He respected fine art but knew little about it”.

Ms. Celis delivered 2 Chainz to the gallery where Andy Warhol’s 8.5 metre work Sixty Last Suppers hung. The work is a composition of 60 black and white silk-screen adaptations of da Vinci’s famous work, and one of Warhol’s last.

“This is the best thing I’ve ever seen in my life!” exclaimed 2 Chainz. “This makes me want to be a billionaire. Can you imagine having this over your dining room table? Oh my god”. That work later sold for $60.8 million.

When he realised some patrons of Christie’s were amused and slightly put off by his playful behavior, 2 Chainz stated “I’m makin these white people mad right here”.

As a judge of luxury, the 40 year old started a GQ online video series in 2014, featuring some of the most expensive things in the world. In over 3 seasons he indulged in some seriously high priced items, including $1,000 ice cream sundaes and $4,000 German toothbrushes. So the Christie’s sale would have been a no-brainer.

2 Chainz’s excitement grew as he made his way through the galleries and closer to ‘The Last da Vinci’. “Take me to the big one!” he begged.

The work, valued at $100 million left 2 Chainz shaking his head in disbelief, “Oh my god. $100 million”. The next day the painting of Christ would shatter records and sell for $450.3 million.

But 2 Chainz wasn’t convinced and it seems he wasn’t the only skeptic. Art critic, Peter Schjeldahl, described the hype surrounding the record-breaking auction as a $450.3 million sale that “transferred a bragging right”.

After some time gazing up to the painting, which underwent a multi year authentication investigation, the rapper enthusiastically asked Ms Celis, “So, tell me one more time, how do we know it’s not a copy of a copy?”

Keep reading. Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope.

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