NEW YORK.- Several reports say that Roman Abramovich is the mysterious buyer of Triptych which was bought for $86.3 million and the 1995 Lucian Freud painting Benefits Supervisor Sleeping for $33.6 million last week at Christie's and Sothebys in New York.
The Art Newspaper cited sources close to the market as confirming that Abramovich, whose wealth is estimated by the Sunday Times' Rich List at £11.7 billion ($22.9 billion), had bought both paintings.
He reportedly bought the paintings for his girlfriend, who plans to open a gallery in Moscow next month, said The Belfast telegraph.
Both works made auction history, the Bacon achieving the highest price for a postwar work of art and Freud becoming the most expensive living artist at auction, taking the title from Jeff Koons.
According to the BBC, a spokesman for Mr Abramovich declined to comment. He said: "We don't get into personal matters." Mr Ambramovich has not previously been known as a serious collector of art.
One of her projects, to transform a 1920s bus garage in Moscow into a gallery for contemporary art and culture, is expected to be launched next month.