The Picasso is appraised at $89,000 (MTN News)

BILLINGS – The excitement at the Yellowstone Art Museum’s 50th annual art auction peaked Saturday when a bidding war broke out between two people over the Picasso print, which is valued at $89,000.

The Picasso print, which is one of only two or three in the world, sold for $62,500.

The sale is a 100 percent donation to the YAM.

The piece, titled Portrait d’Homme a la Fraise, Variation d’apres El Greco, has never before been framed or hung for public viewing.

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Artwork from over 130 artists, locally and nationally, was up for bid. The second highest sale was a painting by artist Kevin Red Star, a member of the Crow Tribe, which went for over $12,000.

Bryan Knicely, the YAM’s new executive director, flew in to Billings two weeks ahead of his move in date just to see the museum’s premier event.

The auction featured work from more than 130 artists (MTN News)

“The fact that this is the fiftieth year for this event just goes to show how successful it is,” said Knicely. “It’s truly an honor to be part of it.”

Knicely comes to the YAM from Indiana and replaces for former Executive Director Robyn Peterson.

Reporting by Aja Goare for MTN News