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Canadian artist Matthew Wong died too soon last October. His works are now fetching stratospheric sums at auction

Canadian artist Matthew Wong died too soon last October. His works are now fetching stratospheric sums at auction
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Matthew Wong’s paintings vibrate with gleeful colour but with a close look, loneliness and despondence start distracting. Amid a riot of bold, stylized trees, for instance, a solitary figure, barely noticed, stands at a wishing well, his hands poised as if he has no coins.

That particular painting, The Realm Of Appearances, was on the auction block at Sotheby’s in New York last week and was expected to draw maybe US$70,000; instead 59 bidders from 16 countries clambered over each other for it. The hammer fell, sold, at US$1,820,000.
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