Steve Cohen drops $165M on Lichtenstein “Masterpiece”

The painting (credit: Roy Lichtenstein foundation)

Banned hedge funder and art collector Steven Cohen dropped $165 million on Roy Lichtenstein’s “Masterpiece” painting back in January through the Acquavella Gallery.

The New York Times reported the news over the weekend in a story about the seller of the painting, collector Agnes Gund. Gund plans to put the $100 million she made from the sale toward her new charity, the Art for Justice Fund. The charity aims to reform the criminal justice system and reduce mass incarceration in the United States.

And that donation makes New York Magazine art critic Jerry Saltz very happy!

The price on this work makes it the 10th most expensive painting ever sold (at least, according to sales that have been recorded). Cohen is no stranger to setting art records, though. He also bought the most expensive sculpture ever in 2015 for $141.3 million at Christie’s, and paid $155 million in 2013 for Picasso’s “Le Rêve,” which he bought from Steve Wynn. He’s also made some (slightly) smaller sales. For instance, he parted with a painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat for $35 million in May at Christie’s.