Basquiat’s 1982 painting Untitled (Devil), sold for $85 Million including buyer’s premium. A nearly 50% increase in value from its 2016 purchase price of $57.3 Million.
The Basquiat was sold by Japanese multimillionaire Yusaku Maezawa, who became an art world celebrity with the purchase of a 1982 Basquiat painting of a skull for $110.5 million.
Some in the art community had reservations over this concentrated buying, hesitant that these record numbers for one artist, from one buyer, would artificially inflate value of the work. Maezawa is collecting with the driving motivation of building a private museum in China where his collection will be housed. The sale of Untitled (Devil) eased the market concerns demonstrating that Basquiat will continue to fetch high auction prices, and that the artist is a good recommendation for collectors.
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