Connect with us

African American History

Remembering When Diddy Bought Kerry James Marshall Painting For $21.1m – Making It The Highest Ever Paid For A Black’s Painting

Remembering When Diddy Bought Kerry James Marshall Painting For $21.1m Making It The Highest Ever Paid For A Blacks Painting

Sean “Diddy” Combs, popularly known as Puff Daddy and P Diddy, was the buyer of a Kerry James Marshall artwork that sold for $21.1 million (£15.6 million) at auction in 2018.

The figure is thought to be the most ever paid for a painting by an African-American artist who is still alive.

Past Times is a painting of black people picnicking, waterskiing, and listening to music in a Chicago park.


It’s a whopping four metres (13 feet) in width.

Marshall’s gallerist and art dealer, Jack Shainman, confirmed the new owner’s name. “I know this work has found a home in a collection with a purpose and an eye toward maintaining Sean Combs’ legacy, and that means a lot,” he told the New York Times.

According to the newspaper, Diddy went to Sotheby’s to see the painting.

The picture was estimated to sell for roughly $8 million. In the end, it sold for four times the previous best for a piece by the 62-year-old Marshall.


Past Times was sold for more than 800 times what the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority (MPEA) paid for it in 1997, the year the work was completed.

The sculpture was originally purchased for $25,000 by the MPEA from the Los Angeles Koplin Gallery.

Marshall is noted for depicting African-American life in his paintings. Before relocating to Chicago, he was born in Alabama and grew up in south central Los Angeles.

The artist previously taught at the University of Illinois at Chicago and was awarded a MacArthur Foundation genius grant in 1997.


The MPEA is mandated to invest a portion of its budget on public art, and it now possesses over 100 works.

Past Times had hung in Chicago’s McCormick Place Convention Centre, slowly accumulating value.

The painting drew four bidders, according to Sotheby’s. Combs’ winning bid was apparently delivered by phone.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *