1970s’ American sensation actress-singer Beatrice Arthur must be a having her famous coy smile in the heavens now – her topless portrait has gone under the hammer for $1.9 million (Rs. 10.43 crore) at Christie's auction house. Huge!
But, the buyer has remained anonymous.
The oil paint portrait, titled 'Bea Arthur Naked', was created by artist John Currin in 1991, with a focus on showing the late actress nude from waist up. However, Currin had claimed then that he had created the portrait from a photograph which showed her fully clothed.
Arthur passed away at the age of 89 in 2009 after a long battle with cancer.
The actress made a name for herself in hit TV shows such as 'Maude' and 'The Golden Girls' alongside Betty White during the 1970s and 80s.
She earned the title of second most nominations for Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, with nine nods throughout her career, and picked up several accolades.
Arthur was born on May 13, 1922 to Philip and Rebecca Frankel (1902–1986) in New York City.
From 1947, Bea Arthur studied at the dramatic workshop of The New School in New York with German director Erwin Piscator and began her acting career as a member of an off Broadway theater group at the Cherry Lane Theatre in New York City in the late 1940s.
On stage, her roles included Lucy Brown in the 1954 Off-Broadway premiere of Marc Blitzstein's English-language adaptation of Kurt Weill's Krakenthorp, a speaking role, in Gaetano Donizetti's La fille du regiment.