Sunday, November 04, 2012

Modern Painters - 50 Under 50 Collectors

We found this interesting article from ARTINFO reprinting Modern Painter's top 50 contemporary art collectors under 50 from around the world. I encourage you to click on the highlighted links for the entire listings in Part I and Part II

50 Under 50 : the most exciting young collectors worldwide
by Modern Painters
Published: July 23, 2012
"The following article is from the July/August issue of Modern Painters. To see an illustrated gallery of the figures listed here, with their descriptions, click on the slide show.
Part I
Robbie Antonio
Manila/New York
Antonio may be the biggest art collector in the Philippines. He is certainly the youngest: The 35-year-old scion and managing director of Century Properties has already amassed a cache of modern and contemporary blue-chip art that rivals that of some small museums, with works by Picasso, Francis Bacon, Willem de Kooning, Andy Warhol, Mark Rothko, Takashi Murakami, and Richard Prince. If Antonio is young, his collection is even younger — he only began buying in 2005. It’s a point of pride that he is on the short list of Asian collectors who are players in the international market. He sees himself as an emissary of sorts, with a mission to bring the world to the Philippines. “The artists who are household names in the West aren’t there,” he says. “I want to change the psyche of a population,” to normalize, in a way, the notion of collecting and arts patronage in an increasingly prosperous country.

Antonio has a taste for artists associated with New York’s 1980s scene. He tends to buy in spurts, he says, delving deeply into one genre or another. “I really like my Bacon,” he admits, “but what represents me more is my commissions.” Many are self-portraits of a sort, conceived in collaboration with the likes of David Salle, David LaChapelle, and the Bruce High Quality Foundation. “Marina Abramović asked me 50 questions over e-mail before she agreed to do a project with me,” he notes. “I like to participate in the genesis of an idea — that way I have a stake in it.” For now much of Antonio’s art is in storage, but he dreams of opening a space to exhibit it. “Collecting art is different from buying anything else,” he says, “because it’s so damn obsessive.”  — Sarah P. Hanson

Jen Bekman
New York/San Francisco
A founder of 20x200, a Web site offering affordable, high-quality editions and prints, Bekman also runs a New York gallery, Jen Bekman Projects. She now divides her time between the East Coast and the West, where she lives with her boyfriend. “It’s nice to have a clean slate, as the walls of my New York apartment filled up long ago, but it’s a bit of a challenge since he needs to like it too,” she says. “Of everything we’ve got teed up for framing, I’m most excited about the biggest piece — an 80-by-60-inch artist’s proof of one of Christian Chaize’s 20x200 editions, which will add some much-needed color and sunshine to our currently bare living room walls. I’m equally excited about the smallest, a drawing that Jason Polan made of the gorgeous potted succulent plants we’ve got sitting on our terrace. Jason did the drawing during an artists’ gathering we hosted, tore it out from his sketch pad, and handed it to me on the spot — the best housewarming gift ever!”

Alfonso Gracia Castillo
Monterrey, Mexico
A former financial adviser, Gracia Castillo has been collecting since he was quite young. In his words, he has “been in contact with the art scene since an early age.” While he pursues emerging artists with a focus on those from Latin America, he is guided in his purchases largely by instinct, he says. His recent acquisitions include etched light boxes by Marcela Armas, cutout photographs by Jose Dávila, sculptures by Cynthia Gutiérrez, and drawings by Françoise Vanneraud.
Part II
The 50 Most Exciting Art Collectors Under 50 (Part 2)
Illustration by ARTINFO
The second half of Modern Painters's list of adventurous young art aficionados.
by Modern Painters
Published: July 30, 2012
This is the second part of Modern Painters's list of the "50 Most Exciting Collectors Under 50" (for Part I, click here). To see an illustrated gallery of the figures listed here, with their descriptions, click on the slide

Mohammed Afkhami
Dubai/New York
Managing partner of MA Partners dmcc, a commodities derivatives consultancy based in the Middle East, Afkhami also serves as an adviser on capital placement to several of the largest global alternative investment firms. He collects international contemporary art, in particular Middle Eastern art, and is a founding member of the British Museum’s Middle East and North African art acquisition committee.

Laura and John Arnold
Recently retired founder of the Centaurus Advisors hedge fund and self-made billionaire, John Arnold, the “king of natural gas,” and his wife, Laura, are committed philanthropists and art collectors. The couple live in a Cubist-inspired house designed by New York architect Alexander Gorlin and collect predominantly modern and contemporary art. Inspired by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, they have pledged to give away half of their wealth over the course of their lifetime.

Haro Cumbusyan and Bilge Ogut-Cumbusyan
“I think a collection should be worth more than the sum of its parts. It should put the artworks into context, reveal unexpected relationships, or allow for surprising new readings,” says Haro Cumbusyan. He and his wife, Bilge, collect mainly video, film, and new media. Because both of them work with technology in their professional lives — Bilge as an investment consultant in technology, media, and telecommunications; Haro as a management consultant — they feel very comfortable with “emerging technologies and connecting cables,” as they put it. Focusing their collection on moving images provided them the opportunity to acquire artworks on a modest budget.
“Everything goes back to art institutions: Bilge and I started dating at the Guggenheim and got engaged at the Whitney,” recounts Haro. Their interest in art institutions motivated the two to open Collectorspace, a nonprofit venue in Istanbul dedicated to making works in private collections publicly available in exhibitions. Says Haro, “For an artwork to be relevant, it should enter the public consciousness.”

Hilary Hatch-Rubenstein
New York
A psychoanalyst by trade and a chairman of the Junior Associates at MoMA, Hatch-Rubenstein has an appetite for art influenced by her parents’ longtime involvement with the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Her first individual purchase, at the age of 15, was an Andy Warhol print of Greta Garbo. Since then her collection has grown to include artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Jim Lambie, Nick Relph and Oliver Payne, Franz West, Tomma Abts, and Mark Leckey.

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