Miro record smashed at London auction

Gallery assistants pose with artist Joan Miro's "Peinture (Etolie Bleue), 1927" at Sotheby's auction house in central London on June 14. The masterpiece sold at a London auction for over £23 million, an auction record for the artist

Spanish painter Joan Miro's 1927 masterpiece "Peinture (Etoile Bleue)" sold at a London auction for over £23 million ($37 million, 29.26 million euros) on Tuesday, an auction record for the artist.

A telephone bidder at Sotheby's sale of impressionist and modern art beat off competition from three rivals to secure the seminal abstract work for £23,561,250.

The painting, which has tripled in price since it was last sold in 2007, belongs to the Catalan's "dream paintings" cycle.

The final price is the most paid at a London auction this year and comfortably exceeded pre-auction estimates of £10-15 million.

Helena Newman, Chairman of Sotheby's Impressionist and Modern Art Department, Europe, said: "We are thrilled to have been able to offer Miro's Peinture (Etoile Bleue) in tonight's auction.

"At a time of unprecedented demand for the best examples of 20th-Century art, this masterpiece by Miro not only shattered the previous record for the artist, but also made more than three times the price it achieved five years ago."