The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City announced Wednesday it has purchased an important early Renaissance painting by Italian painter Duccio di Buoninsegna, "Madonna and Child." The 8-by-11-inch work on wood, created around 1300, was hailed by museum director Philippe de Montebello as "one of the great single acquisitions of the last half century."
The purchase price was not disclosed, but the New York Times reported that art experts familiar with the deal estimated the cost at between $45 million and $50 million. Works by the influential painter are rare, and this one was the last known painting of his still in private hands, the museum said. The seller was not identified.