Apollo Global’s Black Unmasked as “The Scream” Buyer

What do private equity titans do when they’re not out buying up companies or running for president?

They’re apparently buying priceless works of art. Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal outted Leon Black as the unnamed buyer of “The Scream.”

Black, Apollo Global’s chairman and CEO, paid $120 million for the Edvard Munch’s 1895 painting, the WSJ says. The identity of the unnamed buyer has been the subject of speculation for months. Black made the buy in May at a Sotheby’s auction, the WSJ says.

The Apollo CEO is also a big-time buyer of art, the story says. His $750 million collection includes drawings by Vincent Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso cubist paintings and ancient Chinese bronzes, the WSJ says.

Black, three years ago, paid Christie’s $47.6 million for a Raphael chalk drawing, “Head of a Muse.”

Now the big question is where “The Scream” will end up. Black reportedly sits on the board for New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art. Maybe there’ll be a bidding war.

Photo of “The Scream” courtesy of REUTERS/Norsk Telegrambyra AS