Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Judd Kessler


This study investigates whether the death of George Floyd and the subsequent protests of Summer 2020 impacted the price of paintings by Black artists. Auction prices were pooled from December 1, 2017 to December 31, 2022, forming a pre and post period split by Floyd’s death. A treatment group of 22 Black artists and 22 Non-Black contemporaries of style and time period were fed into a mixed effects linear regression with a logarithmic transformation of price. Regression results reveal no significant change in the prices of paintings by Black artists relative to those of their Non-Black contemporaries with the exception of artworks portraying Black human figures. The study reveals that prior to Floyd’s death, a premium existed for paintings containing Black figures; this premium statistically significantly rose after Floyd’s death, particularly for Black artists.


art market, painting prices, black art, black lives matter, george floyd



Date Posted: 24 May 2023


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