Jean-Michel Basquiat’s powerful 1982 painting of a skull was sold for $110.5 million at Sotheby. The painting has become the sixth most expensive work ever sold at auction, according to The New York Times.
“He’s now in the same league as Francis Bacon and Pablo Picasso,” said the dealer Jeffrey Deitch, an expert on Basquiat.
The sale of the painting, “Untitled,” made for a thrilling moment at Sotheby’s postwar and contemporary auction as at least four bidders on the phones and in the room sailed past the $60 million level at which the work forged from oil stick and spray paint had been guaranteed to sell by a third party.
Soon after the sustained applause had subsided, Japanese billionaire, founder of Japan large online mall, Zozotown, Yusaku Maezawa revealed himself to be the buyer through a post on his Instagram. “I am happy to announce that I just won this masterpiece,” he said in the post. “When I first encountered this painting, I was struck with so much excitement and gratitude for my love of art. I want to share that experience with as many people as possible.”
Photo Credit: The New York Times