An antidote to coronavirus blues? A Picasso on your wall

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LE PECQ, France (AP) — How’s this as an antidote for coronavirus blues: A genuine painting by Pablo Picasso on your wall.

After an eight-week delay caused by France’s COVID-19 lockdown, the Christie’s auction house in Paris is hosting a raffle draw Wednesday for “Nature Morte,” an oil on canvas that Picasso painted in 1921.

Proceeds will help provide villagers in Cameroon, Madagascar and Morocco with water — a basic need more essential than ever now for people to wash and protect themselves against the global pandemic.

Raffle organizers say they have already raised 5 million euros ($5.4 million) by selling 50,000 tickets online for 100 euros ($109) each. Their hoped-for sales target was 200,000 tickets, but the coronavirus crisis complicated the task.

Buyers have so far come from more than 100 countries, with the bulk sold in France, the United States, Switzerland and Italy. The winner of a similar

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