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Not Just for Private Eyes: 10 Collectors with Museums

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LEAD, Inside the Museo Soumaya. Courtesy of Fernando Romero EnterprisE Projects.

LEAD
Inside the Museo Soumaya. Courtesy of Fernando Romero EnterprisE Projects.

Some of the top mega-collectors want to share their discerning eye and great taste in art with the world.  Giving tribute to both the artists they support and their own ambitions, many collectors have built their very own private museums, and have invited the public in to marvel at their collections. In these wondrous museums, the role of the collector extends beyond patron to educator, invigorator and community supporter – love and passion for art expands to include artist residencies, lectures and programming that can rival that of public art institutions. Rather than keeping their vast holdings in storage these collectors have shown their commitment to art by giving the public a place to enjoy incredible works of art that may normally be only for private eyes.

 

Donald and Mera Rubell, Rubell Collection

Miami, Florida

http://rfc.museum/

The Rubell Family Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

The Rubell Family Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

Donald and Mera Rubell are among the world’s most known collectors. Their Miami collection is open to the public in a gorgeous 45,000 square foot space.  Highlights include Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring, Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman, Kara Walker and Andy Warhol. In addition to these heavy hitters the Rubells consistently invest in and exhibit emerging artists.  With a strong presence during Art Basel Miami Beach, the Rubell Collection also engages with the Miami community, offering lectures and educational series to locals and schools.

 

Peggy Guggenhim, Peggy Guggenheim Collection

Venice, Italy

http://www.guggenheim-venice.it/

Peggy Guggenheim Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

Peggy Guggenheim Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

The famed heiress, Peggy Guggenheim, collected art at a feverish rate, largely between 1938 and 1946, acquiring important pieces by artists such as Pollock, De Chirico, Braque, Duchamp, Picabia, Picasso, and her ex-husband, Max Ernst.  She began exhibiting the collection seasonally to the public starting in 1951, until her death in 1979. The collection now has permanent residence in Guggenheim’s former home in Venice, the Palazzo Venier dei Eloni, which is now open for the public to enjoy year round.

 

Hildy and Ernst Beyeler, Beyeler Museum

Riehen, Switzerland

http://www.fondationbeyeler.ch/en/Home

Fondation Beleyer Museum. Courtesy of the museum.

Fondation Beleyer Museum. Courtesy of the museum.

The late Hildy and Ernst Beyeler were art dealers who toured their private collection, until commissioning a permanent home in 1997 in Riehen, Switzerland, designed by architect Renzo Piano. The idyllic museum houses modern classics, like Francis Bacon, Paul Cezanne, Claude Monet, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and 23 works by Picasso. The museum is surrounded by the expansive Berower Park, whose trees were once wrapped by Christo and Jeanne-Claude in 1998.

 

George Michael and Kenny Goss, Goss-Michael Museum

Dallas, Texas

http://www.gossmichaelfoundation.org/

Goss-Michael Museum. Courtesy of the museum.

Goss-Michael Museum. Courtesy of the museum.

Recording artist George Michael is also an avid art collector. Along with his partner Kenny Goss, the pair has opened the Goss-Michael Foundation in Dallas, Texas, an expansion of the Goss Gallery which exhibited their personal collection of Young British Artists to the public. The museum, which still includes their vast collection by YBA artists, brings awareness of mid-career and emerging British artists to the thriving Dallas community. The museum hosts insider talks and tours by YBAs including Tracy Emin, Mark Quinn and Jeremy Deller, and has also instated an artist residency program in 2013.

 

Donald Hess, Hess Collection

Napa, California

http://www.hesscollection.com/

The Hess Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

The Hess Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

Collector and wine maker Donald Hess has extended his Napa Valley vineyard escape to include a museum for his collection, which he began building in 1966. The works he collects are driven by his passion and intuition, rather than monetary appreciation, and includes active patronage support to 20 living artists. With rotating exhibitions, the permanent collection includes artists such as Anselm Kiefer, Robert Motherwell and Franz Gertsch.

 

Francois Pinnault , Palazzo Grassi

Venice, Italy

http://www.palazzograssi.it/en/

Palazzo Grassi. Courtesy of the museum.

Palazzo Grassi. Courtesy of the museum.

Ranked one of the world’s top art collectors, Francois Pinnault, known for his holdings in luxury brand Gucci and Christie’s Auction House, acquired the Venetian palace, Palazzo Grassi, to display his collection in 2006. Completed in 1772 by Giorgio Massari, the venue on Venice’s Grand Canal is an appropriate setting for Pinnault’s world-class collection, which features temporary exhibitions based around artists he has deep holdings of, most recently Rudolf Stingel.

 

Guy and Myriam Ullens de Schooten, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art

Beijing, China

http://ucca.org.cn/

Ullens Center for Contemporary Art. Courtesy of the museum.

Ullens Center for Contemporary Art. Courtesy of the museum.

The Dutch collectors’ penchant for Chinese Contemporary art spurred them to open the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing, as a home for their incredible collection. Baron and Baroness Guy and Myriam Ullens de Schooten are not only among the world’s top art collectors, but also help develop and promote Chinese art through programs in their museum, which occupies a Bauhaus style former factory.

 

Poju and Anita Zabludowicz, Zabludowicz Collection

London, England

http://www.zabludowiczcollection.com/

The Zabludowicz Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

The Zabludowicz Collection. Courtesy of the museum.

Collectors Poju and Anita Zabludowicz have taken over a gorgeous Methodist Chapel in North London, and transformed it into a beautiful museum to showcase not only their collection, but to present new commissions by artists they collect. Pushing their role of art patron further, the Zabludowiczs foster artist residencies to create new works, and keep an active art diary about their art adventures. Pushing beyond London, the collectors also have outpost spaces showcasing their collection to the public in New York City and Sarvisalo, Finland.

 

Carlos Slim Helu, Museo Soumaya

Mexico City, Mexico

http://www.soumaya.com.mx/

Museo Soumaya. Courtesy Fernando Romero EnterprisE Projects.

Museo Soumaya. Courtesy Fernando Romero EnterprisE Projects.

Named for his late wife Soumaya, Carlos Slim opened the Museo Soumaya in Mexico City to house his large collection, which includes European artists from the 15th to 20th Centuries, religious relics, historical documents and coin collection. The museum, which is free to the public thanks to Slim’s fortune, is housed in a building that evokes a Rodin sculpture, and was designed by Slim’s son-in-law, Fernando Romero. The collection houses 66,000 pieces of art including Dali, Picasso, Renoir, Miro, van Gogh, Matisse and Monet, and is valued at over $700 million.

 

Charles Saatchi , The Saatchi Gallery

London, England

http://www.saatchigallery.com

The Saatchi Gallery. Courtesy of the museum.

The Saatchi Gallery. Courtesy of the museum.

Mega-collector Charles Saatchi opened the Saatchi Gallery in London in 1985 as a place to share his growing collection of art to the public, and help shape the scope of the art world in Britain. As Saatchi himself moved in phases from collecting US artists and minimalism, to YBAs, to painting, contemporary and Chinese art, the brick and mortar space has also moved, settling at the Duke of York’s HQ in Sloane Square. Known for snapping up work by emerging artists, the collection often pairs unknown artists in their first exhibitions, with established and commercial artists.

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