Muhammad Ali’s Artwork Sells for Nearly a Million Dollars at Auction

It’s widely accepted that Muhammad Ali was the greatest boxer of all-time, but did you know he was also an artist? Back in the 1970s, Ali would routinely create drawings and paintings that humorously related to his own fights. Over a dozen of these artworks were recently sold at Bonhams for a total worth of $945,500.

Amongst the lot of interesting pieces to go on auction, Ali’s Sting Like a Bee (1978) sold for $425,000 USD to a British collector, which toppled its base price of $40,000 USD. In the drawing, a speech bubble hovers over Ali’s defeated opponent, who mumbles, “Ref, he did float like a butterfly and sting like a bee!,” which the referee who is depicted fleeing the ring, says, “Yes, if you were smart you run like me!”

The sales come at a time when Bonhams is ramping up its art offering from historical sports icons. Although the valuation for such artwork has been as low as $500 to $1,000 USD in the past, Robert Rogal, director of New York’s RoGallery, said in a past interview, that “the images that were created by these icons, estates today are very collectible.”

Also happening in art, photographers Robert LeBlanc and Yudo Kurita have partnered up to launch COMFORT Magazine.
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