Japanese billionaire drops $110.5 million on Basquiat painting

Sotheby’s CEO Tad Smith on Monday discussed how Entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa made history in the art world by purchasing a Jean-Michel Basquiat painting for $110.5 million dollars.

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This is the highest price ever paid at an auction for the artwork of an American artist.

“The first gasp was when he started the auction bidding at $57 million which is the world record for Basquiat up to last Thursday… And then there were multiple gasps between $80 and $90 [Million],” he told FOX Business’ Liz Claman.

Smith explained why entrepreneurs are to blame for the rise in philanthropy and art.

“The world is full of entrepreneurs that are creating immense amounts of wealth, creating huge numbers of jobs and frankly there is an enormous amount of capital being built up… I mean today it’s not so much the pictures are so expensive, it’s just relative to the wealth being created they’re less expensive,” he said.

Smith also weighed in on how President Trump is influencing the U.S. economy.

“There are definitely animal spirits that kicked off since the last election; there is no question about it. But the truth is the administration needs to get some of those promises done if we are going to sustain it… In Europe, Asia and the United States it’s a good growth outlook, so we feel pretty good about it,” he said.