Hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin just bought two paintings for $500 million

Hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin has just made an absolutely enormous art purchase, buying two works for a record-breaking $500 million combined in a private sale. One is by Williem de Kooning and the other is a Jackson Pollack. Robert Frank of CNBC just confirmed the sale.

Though the prices for the works aren’t broken down, Frank says the de Kooning is confirmed to be the second most expensive painting ever sold and the most expensive contemporary work ever sold. The most expensive painting ever sold was a Gauguin, which went last February for $300 million in a private sale. The most expensive work to ever sell at auction also went last year; Les Femmes d’Alger (“Version O”) sold at Christie’s for $179.4 million.

Griffin went on quite the spending spree last year, buying a $60 million penthouse in Miami (that he is now trying to flip for $73 million) and was rumored to have spent $200 million on three floors of 220 Central Park South. These paintings will not be decorating his walls, however; he has loaned them to the Art Institute of Chicago, where they will remain indefinitely, according to Frank.

  • ralphpetrillo

    Maybe he will donate them and get a tax break. Otherwise he could of just bought print copies for about $ 79 each. Is he worried about a divorce hearing? What a waste of capital. Almost the opposite of Buffet and Gates who are giving it all away to better society. $ 500 million for two paintings. What a joke.