This is the guy the USA Justice Department went after and brought down apparently not far enough

Last Tuesday night, artnet News reported that Giacometti’s Chariot,auctioned at Sotheby’s Impressionist and modern sale, had just one lone bidder. Anonymous at the time, the buyer turns out to be none other than hedge fund billionaire and mega-collector Steve A. Cohen.

“It’s one of the great 20th-century sculptures,” said Manhattan art dealer, William Acquavella. “Steve is a very serious, very astute collector. . . He also has just the right instincts, ones that can’t be learned from reading art history books,” Acquavella remarked. Months before the auction, experts predicted there would be a bevy of bidders for Chariot, and the price, they estimated, would most likely soar north of Giacometti’s $104.3 million Walking Man I, which billionaire Lily Safra bought at Sotheby’s four years ago.

This was not the case. At the sale, Cohen’s bid, placed on his behalf by David Norman, co-chairman of Sotheby’s Impressionist and modern department worldwide, was the one and only for the work.

The leading lot at Christie’s auction the following night  was purchased by the J. Paul Getty Museum. Manet’s Le Printemps painting, which was sold well above its high estimate of $35 million, was the last of Manet’s Salon paintings still in private hands. It joins the museum’s notable collection of works by the artist, which include two paintings, a watercolor, and a pastel.


Sotheby's experts say Alberto Giacometti's Chariot, which was conceived in 1950 and cast in 1951–2, could bring more than $100 million. Photo: Courtesy Sotheby's.

Eduoard Manet's Le Printemps (1881) is estimated to sell for between $25 and $35 million. Photo: Courtesy Christie's Images Ltd.

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