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Last Updated: Friday, 14 September 2007, 15:12 GMT 16:12 UK
Diamond sculpture 'to raise $12m'
Blue Diamond by Jeff Koons
Blue Diamond is one of a series of five
An 8ft (2.5m) sculpture of a diamond by US artist Jeff Koons is expected to raise around $12m (6m) when it is sold at auction in November.

Part of the artist's famed Celebration series, the blue "diamond" is in fact made of polished steel and chromium.

It will be auctioned at a Christie's sale of post-war and contemporary art in New York on 13 November.

An Andy Warhol portrait of Elizabeth Taylor is expected to fetch $25m (12m) at the same auction.

Liz (Colored Liz) is one of the artist's iconic celebrity portraits from the mid-1960s.

Record-breakers

It depicts the Hollywood star with exaggerated, blood-red lips and bright turquoise eye shadow - a reaction to rumours that the actress was severely ill and near death.

Earlier this year, Warhol's Green Car Crash (Green Burning Car I) set a new auction record for the artist when it sold for $71.7m (35.6m).

Jeff Koons' Michael Jackson and Bubbles
Koons took the pose from a publicity photograph
If Blue Diamond reaches its estimate, it will represent a doubling of the previous record price paid at auction for Koons' work.

His most expensive piece to date is a sculpture of Michael Jackson and his pet monkey Bubbles, which fetched $5.6m (2.8m) in 2001.

Created in 1988 from porcelain, it shows the superstar reclining with his arm around the monkey.

The controversial artist based his Celebration series, which he began in 1994, on a calendar of special events including holidays, birthdays, Valentine's Day and Easter.

Koons says the diamond represents an egg, which is being fertilised by the four gold-coloured prongs that hold it in place.

There are four other versions of the diamond. The red, pink and green sculptures are in private hands, while a yellow version is currently in production.


SEE ALSO
Hirst's diamond skull raises 50m
30 Aug 07 |  Entertainment
Warhol car crashes sales barrier
17 May 07 |  Entertainment
Jackson sculpture breaks record
16 May 01 |  Entertainment

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