A portrait by 17th-century Spanish master Diego Velázquez, long attributed to a minor British artist, has been sold at auction in London for 3,464,144 euros. The new owner of Portrait of a Gentleman, a 47-by-39-centimeter painting of a middle-aged Spanish man, is the Alfred Bader Fine Arts gallery in Milwaukee.
The work was due to be sold in an auction less than a year ago in Oxford for a few hundred pounds. But the sale was stopped at the request of Velázquez expert Peter Cherry, who suspected it could be the work of another painter.
Art dealer Otto Naumann, who attended the auction at Bonhams with partner Alfred Bader, said he was surprised to have obtained the work at "such a cheap [price]," adding the gallery's intention was to restore and resell it.