Paul Allen outed as owner of painting about to go under the hammer

In news that will surprise nobody, a rich guy is about to get even richer.

Paul Allen, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft, is reportedly the owner of a Gerhard Richter painting of a jet fighter that will be hitting the auction block next month. The piece’s auction estimate is $25 million – $35 million.

Bloomberg report that Michael Sherman, a spokesman for Phillips, declined to comment on the seller’s identity, as did a spokeswoman for Allen. But people familiar with the matter, reportedly identify Allen as the painting’s owner.

The work will lead Phillips’ evening sale of 20th century and contemporary art on November 16 at their Park Avenue sales room. It last sold for $11.2 million in 2007 at Christie’s in New York, an auction record at the time for the artist.

Painted in 1963, “Dusenjager” depicts a gray jet traveling through a pink sky. The work is part of a group of Richter’s eight early photo-based paintings that depict World War II-era aircraft. [Bloomberg]