Saudi prince is buyer of world's dearest painting, Leonardo's Salvator Mundi

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The painting is expected to arrive at the Louvre in Abu Dhabi, a museum in the United Arab Emirates.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi opened on 8 November in the presence of French President Emmanuel Macron, who described it as a "bridge between civilisations".

Ever since the sale at Christie's, the identity of the buyer has been the most sought-after secret in the art world and beyond.

The announcement only partially resolves the mystery over the painting's sale last month in NY for $450.3m, with auction house Christie's steadfastly declining to identify the buyer.

Acquired a painting by a famous artist apparently, the Saudi Arabia Prince Bader bin Abdullah bin Mohammed.

Salvator Mundi - the painting depicting Christ by Leonardo Da Vinci recently auctioned for a record $450m - is heading to the Louvre Abu Dhabi in a coup for the new museum. Buyers from the Middle East and Asia have been snapping up masterpieces to fill regional museums in China and the Middle East.

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The organization behind the museum became one of the most aggressive buyers on the global art market over the last decade.

Christie's auction house, which handled the sale, had said that it was the only known Da Vinci piece remaining in private hands. The painting's authenticity is still widely questioned by many experts, while the issue of overpainting, restoration and conservation will always be an underlying issue. By this time, its authorship by Leonardo, origins and illustrious royal history had been forgotten, and Christ's face and hair were overpainted. The prince is not a previously known art collector, the Times reports, and the sources of his wealth are not publicly known, but he is a close associate of crown prince Mohammed bin Salman, whose far-reaching anti-corruption purge last month cleared the way to the Saudi throne.

"We are pleased that the picture will be exhibited again", said Christie's spokesperson. Rybolovlev bought it in 2013 for $127.5 million from art dealer Yves Bouvier along with some other canvases.

Salvator Mundi, which means Saviour of the World, went on public display in 2011 in a dramatic unveiling at the National Gallery in London, where the work was declared to be the first newly discovered Da Vinci painting in a century.

At Christie's Da Vinci auction, the salesroom was full of millionaires and billionaires, including Point72 Asset Management's Steve Cohen, Blackstone Group LP's Tom Hill, who collects Old Master works, and philanthropist Eli Broad.

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