Who knew that photogenic potatoes could be so valuable?
An image formally titled, "Potato #345 (2010)," by Kevin Abosch was recently reported to have sold last year for 1 million Euros ($1.08 million). Abosch, a visual artist known primarily for super fast portraits of high-profile Silicon Valley executives and celebrities, said the deal was made with a German businessman over dinner and a some glasses of wine.
The potato received the same photographic treatment as those Silicon Valley insiders and celebs -- posed with a simple black backdrop. Business Insider reported that Abosch, who splits his time between Paris and Dublin, charges anywhere from $150,000 to $500,000, including commercial licensing, for portraits that have become a status symbol. Some of the major world figures that have sat in front of Abosch's camera include Nobel Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai, actor Johnny Depp, Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg and Yoko Ono.
A statement by the artist made to CNN explains his affinity for potatoes, "I see commonalities between humans and potatoes that speak to our relationship as individuals within a collective species."
"Generally, the life of a harvested potato is violent and taken for granted. I use the potato as a proxy for the ontological study of the human experience."
The sale, if verified, would make the photograph the 15th most expensive one ever sold, joining a list that includes works by Andreas Gursky ("Rhein II" for $4,338,500 and "99 Cent II Diptychon" for $$3,346,456), Cindy Sherman ("Untitled #96" for $3,890,500), Edward Steichen ("The Pond--Moonlight" for $2,928,000).