A PICASSO masterpiece unseen in public for 43 years fetched more than twice its expected price at auction - going for 8.1million. Tete de Femme (Jacqueline), a 1963 portrait of the artists second wife, had not been seen in public since 1967 and was expected to fetch 3million to 4million at Christies sale. A Christies employee admires Picassos 1963 painting 'Tete de Femme (Jacque-line), which sold for 8.1milllion. Jacqueline had an unusually short neck and it is said that Picasso would jokingly exaggerate its size in his portraits - as in this elongated example. The portrait had never been offered at auction and had remained in the same collection since 1981. The sale once again proved the artists appeal to wealthy collectors and was the most talked-about lot of a string of masterpieces by Picasso, Renoir and Matisse which went under the hammer. Christies Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale, held in London, raised a total of nearly 77million. The total is further evidence of a relatively robust art market that has been less affected by the economic crisis than many experts had predicted. Tete de Femme (Jacqueline) fetched 8,105,250, including the buyers premium. The second highest price on the night was 7.1million paid for Dutch artist Kees van Dongens 'La Gitane versus a pre-sale estimate of 5.5-7.5million. Russian painter Natalia Goncharovas 'Espagnole, offered at auction for the first time, was sold for 6.4million, above the high estimate of 6million. Espagnole, circa 1916, was described by Christies as 'one of the finest examples of the artists work to be offered at auction. 'Its been a very busy evening and many of the pieces have exceeded estimates, the Christies spokeswoman said. Gitane, circa 1910 to 1911, was described as a 'striking portrait by the Dutch artist, executed at one of the most important periods of his career. Daily Mail Christies also held a surreal art sale the other day which raised around 10.1million, within expectations of 8.2-11.7million. Rival auction house Sothebys holds its impressionist and modern art sale in London Wednesday. Daily Mail