Valencian Fishermen," one of the first outdoor paintings by Joaquin Sorolla , was auctioned off Tuesday for $3.73 million pounds ($5.93 million) at Sotheby's in London.

The work, acquired by a European foundation, more than doubled its estimated price and was the star of an auction of 124 lots of European painting from the 19th and 20th centuries.

Sorolla (1863-1923) exhibited "Valencian Fishermen" at the 1896 International Art Exposition in Berlin, where it was unanimously chosen for a gold medal.

The painting was purchased by the Nationalgalerie of Berlin, on whose walls it was displayed with works by such artists as Manet, Renoir and Monet until 1930, when the museum decided to sell all its works that were not of German origin.

Since then the canvas has been included in a number of exhibitions in Europe and the United States, including the 2009 Sorolla retrospective in the Prado. EFE