Mystery Munch Buyer Revealed

    Edvard Munch's 'The Scream' is seen as it is hung for display at Sotheby's Auction Rooms in London, Thursday, April 12, 2012.  The picture made with pastels is one of four versions of the composition, and dates from 1895, it will be auctioned in the Impressionist and Modern Art Sale in New York on May 2, with an estimated price of 80 million dollars. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

    Kirsty Wigglesworth / AP Photo

    Can you get existential angst from spending $120 million dollars on a painting about existential angst? You’ll have to ask Financier Leon Black, who paid that amount for Edvard Munch’s iconic painting ‘The Scream’ at a record-breaking auction in May. The mystery buyer’s identity was a closely guarded art-world secret until this week, when several of Black’s colleagues revealed the buyer to the press. Now the big question is not the buyer’s identity, but which museum will get to keep the coveted painting. Black sits on the boards of both New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art, setting up a potential tug-of-war between the two museums for custody of the gift-shop marketable work. Black’s existing $750 million collection is also said to include drawings by Van Gogh and Raphael and paintings by Picasso.

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