LONDON (AFP) – A collection of paintings by Britain’s wartime leader Winston Churchill was auctioned off on Wednesday in the biggest ever sale of artwork by the statesman and accomplished painter.
The 15 paintings included views from his holidays in France as well as the interiors of his home in Chartwell near London and Blenheim Palace, where the cigar-chomping aristocrat was born.
The works in the Sotheby’s auction came from the personal collection of his daughter and close confidante Mary Soames who passed away earlier this year.
“The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell”, showing the garden pond where the statesman used to feed fish whose descendants still swim there today, sold for £1.8 million (US$2.8 million, 2.2 million euros), a record for a Churchill painting. The paintings provide a rare insight into the World War II prime minister’s family life and the talent that his daughter said had helped him escape the rough and tumble of political life.
Sotheby’s said it was “the most important and personal group of his paintings ever to come to the market”.