On Tuesday, Edward Hopper’s painting Chop Suey sold at auction for $91.9 million. As with most things in the art world, there’s more to the story than just money.
ABOVE: Edward Hopper, Chop Suey, 1929, oil on canvas, 32 x 38 inches
First, here is a quick timeline of the painting:
- Edward Hopper paints Chop Suey in 1929
- Businessman Barney Ebsworth purchases it for $180,000 in 1973
- Ebsworth promises it to the Seattle Art Museum in 2007
- He passes away in April, 2018
- The painting, along with 65 other promised works, goes up for sale at Christie’s
- Chop Suey sells for $91.9 million on November 13, 2018
To date, no one has gone on record to state why things went down the way they did. Did Ebsworth have a falling out with the museum before he died? Does his family need the money? We may never know. Sadly, the painting (and others from the collection) may now disappear into a private collection.