Salvator Mundi will be on permanent exhibition at the Louvre Abu Dhabi.

In November, Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi auctioned for a whopping US$450 million, officially making it the world’s most expensive painting.

Now it’s just been announced the seminal piece of art will be on permanent display at the Louvre Abu Dhabi from September 18.

Christie’s, the auction house responsible for selling the painting, never revealed who placed the winning bid. That it cost nearly half a billion dollars was reportedly enough for even the CIA to get involved in identifying the successful bidder.

Less than a month after the sale, the sleuthing came to an end when the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism revealed it had acquired the masterpiece.

At the time, the Louvre Abu Dhabi also announced that the painting would be exhibited at the museum, though it did not specify when that would happen. Until now.

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“Lost and hidden for so long in private hands, Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece is now our gift to the world. It belongs to all of us,” said HE Mohamed Khalifa Al Mubarak, chairman of the Department for Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi.

The painting, which features Christ with his right hand raised in benediction, and the left holding an orb, dates back to around 1500BC.

It is only one of around 20 paintings by da Vinci that are believed to exist today. Currently, another of his paintings – the La Belle Ferronniere – is on display at the Louvre Abu Dhabi and is on a loan from the Louvre Pairs.

Next year, the Louvre Abu Dhabi will return the favour when it loans Salvator Mundi to the Louvre Paris in October 2019 to commemorate 500 years since the artist’s death. In February 2020, the painting will be returned to the UAE.

This is the first time in nearly 500 years that the painting will be on public display. Culture vultures, form an orderly queue.

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Images: Getty