They may not know much about art, but....
LONDON — Monkey business proved to be lucrative yesterday when paintings by Congo the chimpanzee sold at auction for more than $25,000.
The three abstract, tempera paintings were auctioned at Bonhams in London alongside works by impressionist master Renoir and pop-art provocateur Andy Warhol.
But while Warhol's and Renoir's work didn't sell, bidders lavished attention on Congo's paintings.
...."We had no idea what these things were worth," said Howard Rutkowski, director of modern and contemporary art at Bonhams. "We just put them in for our own amusement."
Congo, born in 1954, produced about 400 drawings and paintings between ages 2 and 4. He died in 1964 of tuberculosis.
His artwork provoked reactions ranging from scorn to skepticism among critics of the time, but Pablo Picasso is reported to have hung a Congo painting on his studio wall after receiving it as a gift.