WHAT'S THE FIRST PIECE YOU WERE ABLE TO PURCHASE AS A COLLECTOR?
It's a painting of John Kirby titled “Black, White and Gray.” When I saw it, I didn't buy it right away - I literally could not not buy it, but I thought about it everyday for like three months. I said, “I'm going to work toward getting this,” even though I didn't know how, where, when it was going to happen.
Three months went by, so I called the gallery to see if it was still there - and IT WAS. I asked them for the price, but when they told me all I could say was “Sigh.” So I emailed them back and asked, “What can you do?” They know what that means...When they finally responded, they asked “What would you be willing to pay?” I sent them a price and he emailed me back saying “No.” Just “No.” I was so distraught. My studio assistants thought someone had died. But then, maybe two weeks later, I got a message saying “Sir, you can have it.” I was like, “Oh my god! The celebration started!”