This photo sold for £4million and some people are angry

This is Phantom, a monochromatic photograph by Peter Lik of a shaft of light in an Arizona canyon.

This week in Las Vegas it was sold to an anonymous, long-time collector of Lik's work for $6.5million (£4.1m), becoming the most expensive photo of all time.

Two other works from Australian-born Lik, Illusion and Eternal Moods, sold for $2.4m (£1.5m) and $1.1m (£700,000) respectively for a total of $10m (£6.4m).

Lik has now taken four of the most expensive photographs in history after his image One - previously the most expensive - sold for $1m in 2011.

The sale of the photo has proven a bit polarising, however...

I've never even heard of him. It's pretty astonishing. I've looked at his work today and, though he's a very good commercial photographer who can take pictures people like, he has no standing whatever in the fine-art world that I belong to.

  • Martin Parr, renowned British photographer

It's an abomination. I remember when he sold the picture in 2010, my jaw dropped. I thought, 'who could be persuaded to part with $1m for a piece of tat?' You could have done it with an iPhone.

  • Michael Hoppen, a leading British photography gallerist

Art's worth is what someone is willing to pay for it. And if an artwork is only legitimate through the intervention of someone's hand on material, then photography would not be alone in not fitting that categorisation. It's a very old-fashioned idea.

  • Clare Grafik, the head of exhibitions at the Photographers' Gallery in London

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