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The 'model B' piano, made in Hamburg in 1909, was purchased by Sting in 2002. He used it on three albums - Songs from the Labyrinth, If on a Winter's Night and The Last Ship.

The sale was led at £850,000 by Ben Nicholson's (1894-1982) March 55 (amethyst), a pencil and oil wash on board.

Juxtaposing planar forms, it was conceived in one of the artist's most prolific and successful periods. The previous year (1954), he exhibited at the XXVII Venice Biennale and was awarded the Ulisse prize.