Aaron Payne

SFAI Board Member

Private Art Dealer, Aaron Payne Fine Art

Aaron Payne is a private art dealer with over three decades of experience in the acquisition and sale of Modern, Postwar and Contemporary Art. He founded Aaron Payne Fine Art in 2000 after working over a decade for other prominent American art dealers. Aaron has had galleries in New York City and Santa Fe.

Aaron Payne was born and raised in Los Angeles. His love of art comes from his parents and growing up in a home surrounded by the artworks of Romare Bearden, David Hammons, Jacob Lawrence, John Outterbridge, Betye Saar and other contemporary African-American artists. His parents were some of the earliest collectors of David Hammons and other Brockman Gallery artists and many weekends were spent either at the gallery or entertaining artists in their home.
Shortly after his graduation from Harvard, Aaron moved to New York to begin his career in the art world. During this time, Aaron worked with The Romare Bearden Estate, Faith Ringgold, the Alma Thomas Estate and many others. His areas of specialty include American Modernism, the Stieglitz Circle, Western Art, Postwar, Contemporary and African-American art.
As an advisor to private, corporate and public collections, Aaron has placed seminal works by important American artists and also set private sale and auction records for many artists in the process.
Aaron is also a collector of African-American art and currently manages his family’s collection of African-American art. He has lent artworks to numerous exhibitions including Now Dig This (2011) and the recent Soul of a Nation (2017-2020).

Aaron holds a B.A. in History & Literature from Harvard College. He is an Ashtanga Yoga and paddle boarding enthusiast.