Some would agree that being an artist is not a lucrative job. Lucky are those few famous artists who have amassed a huge amount of cash through their artwork. Majority of the artists are criticized for wasting their time in the field and end up living below the poverty line.
As revealed by Wealth-X, an intelligence provider on ultra-high net worth individuals, British artist Damien Hirst is the wealthiest artist in the world.
5 Damien Hirst - $350 Million
Damien Hirst is famous for his provocative, beautiful and meretricious artworks such as dead animals preserved in formaldehyde. He is the first ever living artist to sell a complete show at a Sotheby’s auction in 2008. The auction, dubbed “Beautiful Inside my Head Forever,” raised $198 million, beating the previous record for a one-artist auction. The 25 year old now has been dubbed the Young British Artist, with a net worth of $350 million. His masterpiece, “For the Love of God," the diamond encrusted skull was priced at $100 million.
4 Jasper Johns - $210 Million
Jasper Johns is an American abstract expressionist painter and sculptor with a net worth of $210 million. His painting False Start was bought by private collectors for $80 million in 2006 which is the "most expensive work by a living artist." His work Three Flags was purchased by the Whitney Museum for a million dollars.
3 Andre Vicari - $210 Million
This unknown artist who lives in France has a net worth of $210 million. He has established himself as a portraitist to the upper class, his artworks selling from $6 million to $20 million. His trademark work is marked by its swirling Niemanesque use of color.
2 Jeff Koons - $100 million
This American pop artist has a net worth of $100 million. Peter Schjeldahl of The New Yorker described his works as "uncannily mediocre paintings suggest an insensibility in two dimensions that is as amazing, in its way, as his genius in three." Some of his works include his balloon dogs, floating basketballs, flowering “Puppy” – all considered as Disneylike. Jeff Koons also created a studio that helps him fabricate these massive and expensive works at an impressive clip.
1 David Choe - $100 Million
David Choe has a net worth of $100 million and was commissioned by Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg to paint murals on the walls of Facebook’s office. He opted to be paid for $60,000 not in cash but in Facebook stock, a move that gave him a significant windfall at the company’s IPO in 2012.