An untitled portrait by Jean Michel-Basquiat sold for $110.5 million at Sotheby’s in New York, setting a record for any American artist. The buyer was Japanese online retail magnate Yusaku Maezawa.
The painting, which had a presale estimate of more than $60 million, was bought at auction in 1984 for $19,000 by the late collectors Jerry and Emily Spiegel.
We were chatting about this purchase yesterday and someone asked how much that 1984 $19,000 was worth in today’s dollars. An interesting question. Take a guess, purely based on inflation. Then go to this inflation calculator and see how close you came.