Auction Block

Nude Carla Bruni Photo Fails to Sell

Sarkozy and the camera may love her, but French auction houses don't. A nude photograph of French first lady and former model Carla Bruni was yanked from a Parisian auction block after it failed to surpass its undisclosed reserve price. Taken by famed photographer Michel Comte, the image—a full-body depiction of a nude Bruni, her hands folded demurely in front of her nethers—sold for $91,000 at New York's Christie's auction house in April 2008. This time around, bidding started at 4000 euros and ended at 5800 euros, the equivalent of $8700. Later, a private, behind-the-scenes sale put the image in the hands of an anonymous buyer for a scant 6000 euros.