This is the Jackson Pollock painting that David Geffen has reportedly sold for $140 million — should I say that again? $140 million — to Mexican financier David Martinez. It's of course the most ever believed paid for a painting, topping the $135 million that fetched the Klimt portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer that created such a sensation at LACMA last spring. Geffen has been on a selling spree of late, last month letting go a Jasper Johns and a Willem de Kooning for a total of $143.5 million, the New York Times says. The NYT goes light on the speculation that Geffen is gathering cash to make an offer for the Los Angeles Times, which he has previously said he could pay $2 billion for without blinking too hard. Crain's Chicago, however, leads with the link since this week the Tribune company said it would entertain offers. Geffen's modern art taste stands in stark contrast to that of recent Times stewards. Until the late 1990s the executive dining room at Times Mirror Square was decorated with Picassos and a private room for lunches with visiting dignitaries was the Tamayo Room. Mark Willes, the Times Mirror CEO hoodwinked by Tribune's takeover, got rid of all the art and replaced it with copies of newspaper front pages.
* At LA Biz Observed: Times publisher David Hiller and Tribune CEO Dennis FitzSimmons emailed statements to the staff to tell them, well, there's nothing they can say.
Photo: New York Times