Tracey Emin's My Bed to be auctioned by Charles Saatchi


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The Independent Culture

Tracey Emin’s My Bed, a sordid recreation of the site of a three-day breakdown and one of Britain’s most polarising pieces of modern art, is to be sold on auction this summer, it has been reported.

Charles Saatchi, who has owned the work since 2001, is preparing to sell it through the Christies auction house later this year, The Telegraph reported. The British artist, 50, said it was “the end of an era”.

Made in her council flat in Waterloo in 1998 and displayed at the Tate Britain three years later, the work narrowly missed out on the Turner Prize but garnered coverage and criticism in equal measure.

The work, comprising stained sheets, used condoms and empty bottles of vodka became a seminal work that eventually was sold to Charles Saatchi for a reported £150,000. Last weekend, Emin’s dealer in New York, David Maupin, who sold the bed to Saatchi, said the estimate of £800,000 to £1.2 million is too low for such a significant work.

My Bed was first exhibited in Japan and garnered more coverage when two Chinese artists staged a pillow fight on it as a political act during the Turner Prize.

In 2010, Saatchi offered 200 works from his collection, including My Bed, to the nation free of charge if his Chelsea gallery could be given museum status. The offer was not accepted.