An untitled work by Jean-Michel Basquiat from 1981 just sold for $20,170,071, according to the Christie’s Twitter feed. The sum marks a new auction high for the artist, breaking a record set just this past spring at Phillips de Pury & Company where another untitled work from that year sold for $16.3 million.
According to the Artnet price database, the work that was purchased this evening in London last sold at auction in May 2007, when it made $14.6 million at Sotheby’s New York.
The new record reflects prices already achieved on the private market. After that Phillips auction, many collectors said they’d seen plenty of Basquiats sell for prices in the $20 million range.