Arts & Life

Sold: Warhol's Portrait of Elizabeth Taylor

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Actor Hugh Grant auctioned the painting for $21 million.

BILL WOLFF (Announcer): From NPR News in New York, this is THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT.


This is THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT from NPR News. It's Wednesday, November 14th. Good morning. I'm Luke Burbank.


And I'm Alison Stewart.

And I'm obsessed with this story…

BURBANK: A little bit.

STEWART: …about Governor Eliot Spitzer - -the governor of New York. He has decided to abandon his plan to issue driver's licenses for illegal immigrants. Now, that came out in the paper today. Do you remember…

BURBANK: And why is that such a big deal, you think?

STEWART: Because this is me, conspiracy theorist 101, thinking, well, you know, Hillary Clinton's got a debate to go to tomorrow and she's the senator from New York, and wasn't this the issue that tripped her up in the last debate and started the whole flip-flopping and the obfuscating…

BURBANK: Sure, that, too.

STEWART: …things, allegations against her?

BURBANK: So you think, maybe, it's - the timing is interesting that they would be taking this off the table just as Hill is going to back on TV tomorrow night.

STEWART: You know, timing is everything. That's all I'm saying. Timing is everything.

BURBANK: And do you know where else timing is everything, Alison?


BURBANK: When you're involved in an art auction.

STEWART: Oh, my gosh, yeah.

BURBANK: So this Andy Warhol painting of Elizabeth - I guess it's really a portrait of Elizabeth Taylor that we've been talking about so much mostly because we like playing that sound clip of Elizabeth Taylor. Noo.

STEWART: It will be coming up again, don't worry.

BURBANK: It actually went on the auction block last night. We're going to talk about how much it went for and what that means for an art market, some people say, is overpriced.

STEWART: We're also going to talk about Benazir Bhutto. Some media reports -they're painting the former prime minister of Pakistani as a savior, as a signal of hope, but she's really a very complex person with a very, very - I don't want to say checkered past, that isn't the right - well, she was accused of allegations of corruption and the like. So we want to actually get a complete picture…


STEWART: …of Benazir Bhutto so we'll talk later…

BURBANK: Because as Musharraf has cracked down, she's been a lot - for a lot people, been elevated as the, like, the other.


BURBANK: But she's got her own skeletons which we'll find out about.

Also, the lovely, the talented, Padma Lakshmi, you know her from "Top Chef." She's got a new cookbook out, and she's bringing food. I'm sorry, Padma Lakshmi is bringing food to the radio show I work on.

STEWART: How happy are you? Is this a dream come true?

BURBANK: I haven't been this happy since the Pipettes were here.

And we've also got the news from Rachel Martin in just a moment.

First, though, the BPP's Big Story.

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