Funnyman Jimmy Kimmel has been revealed as the mystery buyer who paid $1.9 million (£1.2 million) for a painting of topless actress Bea Arthur. On Friday (24May13), comedian Jeffrey Ross tweeted a photo of himself with the John Currin original, which was sold at auction earlier this week (beg20May13), and hinted that the painting was a gift from the late night TV host.
Ross wrote, "Biggest surprise of my life. Thank you Jimmy Kimmel - the most generous guy in the world!"
Kimmel responded by tweeting, "Bea is watching over us, but especially you."
The 1991 nude, titled Bea Arthur Naked, was sold at Christie's Post-War and Contemporary Art Sale in New York on Wednesday (15May13).
Publicists for both Kimmel and Ross have yet to comment on the story. Arthur, the star of TV sitcom The Golden Girls, died in 2009.
The Golden Girls thanked us all for being their friends, but who knows if that thanks extends to John Currin, the artist who created this topless painting of the late great Bea Arthur titled, creatively, "Naked Bea Arthur." The painting, which caused quite a controversy when it was produced in 1991 and caused some art critics to tell people to boycott Currin for his unauthorized nudies, is now up for auction at Christie's and expected to fetch up to $2.5 million dollars. Click on that link if you want to see the full, graphic version. Rose is really gonna have to save up a lot if she wants to buy it and save Dorothy the humiliation of having it displayed in public forever.
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An odd topless portrait of late Golden Girls star Bea Arthur is expected to fetch millions at auction on Wednesday night (15May13). John Currin's 1991 painting will go under the hammer at Christie's in New York and estimates suggest the artwork could sell for $2.5 million (£1.6 million).
The actress lost her battle with cancer in 2009.