August 21, 2009 / 12:15 AM / 8 years ago

Warhol painting of Michael Jackson sold at auction

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A portrait of the late King of Pop, Michael Jackson, painted pop art icon Andy Warhol has been sold at auction in New York for an undisclosed amount.

<p>Andy Warhol's 1984 portrait of entertainer Michael Jackson is shown in this publicity photo released to Reuters August 20, 2009. REUTERS/Vered Gallery/Handout</p>

Janet Lehr, owner of the Vered Gallery on New York’s Long Island, said the painting was sold Tuesday night, and while one report said the price was in excess of $1 million, Lehr declined to give a figure.

The average auction price for a Warhol in recent years has hovered around $17 million, and the top price paid for one of his works at auction was $71 million for a piece called “Car Crash.” The high for one of the artist’s portraits was $28 million for a Marilyn Monroe picture titled “Lemon Marilyn.”

Warhol’s Jackson portrait was painted in 1984 and commissioned to celebrate record-breaking sales of the singer’s album “Thriller.”

Jackson died on June 25 of cardiac arrest in Los Angeles at age 50, only days before he was to have begun a series of comeback concerts at London’s O2 arena.

Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis

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