Sean Combs has been unmasked as the mystery buyer of a $21.1 million painting after days of speculation about which collector or museum bought the landmark work by Kerry James Marshall.
The painting, called “Past Times,” was auctioned Wednesday in a sale that was widely reported to be the most ever paid for the work of a living African-American artist. Jack Shainman, Marshall’s gallerist and dealer, told The New York Times the buyer was in fact Sean “Diddy” Combs and not a famous gallery.
“I know that this work has found a home in a collection with purpose and an eye toward preserving legacy—that of Sean Combs, and that means a lot,” said Shainman. He added that Combs was supposedly introduced to the painter’s work by fellow hip-hop recording artist and record producer Swizz Beatz.