The Top Ten Billionaire Art Collectors (June 2013)

David Lawrence Geffen (born February 21, 1943)[2] is an American business magnate, producer and philanthropist.

RANK 1 AMOUNT (US$) 1.1bn RATIO OF ART 20.0% FULL NAME David Lawrence Geffen ESTIMATED NET WORTH 5.5 Billion

Art collection

Geffen is a keen collector of American artists’ work, including Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko and Willem de Kooning. According to the chief curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Paul Schimmel: “There’s no collection that has a better representation of post-war American art than David Geffen’s.”[16]

In October 2006, Geffen sold two paintings by Jasper Johns and a De Kooning from his collection for a combined sum of $143.5 million. On November 3, 2006, the New York Times reported that Geffen had sold Pollock’s 1948 painting No. 5, 1948 from his collection for $140 million (£73.35 million) to Mexican financier David Martinez. Martinez is the founder of London-based Fintech Advisory Ltd, a financial house that specializes in buying Third World debt. The sale made No. 5, 1948 the most expensive painting ever sold (outstripping the $134 million paid in October 2006 for Gustav Klimt’s portrait Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I, purchased by cosmetics heir Ronald Lauder).

Steven A. Cohen (born June 11, 1956) is an American hedge fund manager. He is the founder of SAC Capital Advisors, a Stamford, Connecticut-based hedge fund focusing primarily on equity market strategies.


Art collector

Cohen began collecting art in 2000, and has since become a prominent collector, appearing on Art News magazine’s “Top 10” list of biggest-spending art collectors around the world each year since 2002,[39] and Forbes magazine’s “Top Billionaire Art Collectors” list in 2005.[40] To date, Cohen has bought around $700 million worth of artwork;[41] in 2003, the New York Times reported that in a five-year period, Cohen spent 20% of his income at art auctions.[42]

Cohen owns between 4.7% and 5.9% of the stock of Sotheby’s auction house, which has been described as a “significant stake.”[43]

He is reportedly building a private museum for some of his artwork on his Greenwich property.[44] In the winter of 2005, it became known that in 1999 Cohen had bought Edvard Munch’s Madonna. Reportedly, this was for $11.5 million.

His tastes in collecting changed quickly from Impressionist painters to contemporary art. He also collects ‘trophy’ art—signature works by famous artists[40][45]—including a Pollock drip painting from David Geffen for $52 million and Damien Hirst’s The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, a piece that the artist had bought back from Charles Saatchi for $8 million.[46] In the last two years, he reportedly paid $25 million each for a Warhol and a Picasso. He is a major patron of the Marianne Boesky art gallery.

He has purchased some unusual art works. In 2006, Cohen remarked that repairing his suspended shark artwork, a cost estimated to be a minimum of $100,000, was an “inconsequential” expense. Since the shark itself is over 10 years old, it has begun to rot and requires replacement.[47] The replacement shark has already been caught;[48] once the exhibit is fixed, Cohen will have it moved into his SAC office.[41] Cohen has also placed Marc Quinn’s Self, a head sculpture made of frozen blood, in the SAC lobby.[41]

In addition, in 2006 Cohen bought a landscape entitled “Police Gazette” by artist Willem de Kooning for $63.5 million from David Geffen.[49] Also in 2006, Cohen attempted to make the most expensive art purchase in history when he offered to purchase Picasso’s Le Reve from casino mogul Steve Wynn for $139 million. Just days before the painting was to be transported to Cohen, Wynn, who suffers from poor vision due to retinitis pigmentosa, accidentally thrust his elbow through the painting while showing it to a group of acquaintances inside of his office at Wynn Las Vegas. The purchase was canceled, and Wynn still held the painting[50] until early November, 2012, when Cohen purchased the painting for $150 million.[51] In November 2006, Cohen purchased another Willem de Kooning painting, Woman III, from David Geffen for $137.5 million.[52]

Eli Broad (/brɵd/; born June 6, 1933) is an American philanthropist and entrepreneur. He is the only person to found two Fortune 500 companies[2] in different industries.



Eli Broad has been an influential figure in the art world since 1973.
Los Angeles arts and civic engagement Broad was the founding chairman of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles in 1979 and chaired that board until 1984. He recruited the founding director of the museum [20] and negotiated the acquisition of the Panza Collection for the museum.

In 2008, The Broad Foundation gave a $30 million challenge grant to rebuild the museum’s endowment and to provide exhibition support. The Foundation’s donation was contingent on the museum remaining independent and not merging with Los Angeles County Museum of Art.[21]

Broad is a life trustee of LACMA. In 2003, The Broad Foundation gave $60 million to the museum as part of its renovation campaign to create the Broad Contemporary Art Museum and for an art acquisition fund.[22]

The Broads provided the lead gift of $6 million to the Los Angeles Opera to bring Richard Wagner’s opera cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen to Los Angeles for the 2009-2010 season.[23] In June 2013, the Broads gave $7 million to continue funding the Eli and Edythe Broad general director at L.A. Opera, currently occupied by Plácido Domingo.

Broad Art Center, by Meier at the UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture

The Broads contributed $10 million in 2008 for a programming endowment for a state-of-the-art music and performing arts center at Santa Monica College, The Eli and Edythe Broad Stage, and an adjacent black box performance space, The Edye.

Art collection

Broad’s interest in art began in 1973 with his family’s first acquisition of a Van Gogh drawing, entitled “Cabanes a Saintes-Maries” (1888).[28] Art collector and MCA executive Taft Schreiber[29] became his mentor. The Broads’ early acquisitions included notable works by Miró, Picasso and Matisse.[30] Eventually, the pair began to concentrate on post–World War II art.[31]

Eli and Edythe Broad established The Broad Art Foundation in 1984 with the goal of making their extensive contemporary art collection more accessible to the public; to date The Foundation has made more than 8,000 loans to more than 500 museums and university galleries worldwide.

The Broads have two collections—a personal collection with nearly 600 works and The Broad Art Foundation’s collection, which has approximately 1,500 works Modern and contemporary art. In January 2008, the Broads decided that works in their personal collection would ultimately go to their foundation to make the artwork accessible to the public through the foundation’s loan program.

Some of the best-known works are by contemporary artists including:[32]

John Baldessari’s two text paintings from 1967–68.
Jasper Johns – flag paintings (1960 and 1967), mixed-media “Watchman” (1964), “hatch” (1975)
Jeff Koons – fluorescent-lighted vacuum cleaners (1981), floating basketballs and bronze lifeboat (both 1985), stainless-steel bunny rabbit (1986), “Bubbles,” a life-size porcelain portrait of Michael Jackson and his pet chimpanzee (1988) bought on May 15, 2001 for 5.6M,[33] the first “Balloon Dog” (1994, in blue), and a “Cracked Egg” purchased for $3.5 million in 2006.[34] Broad owns more than 20 Koons pieces, and donated €640,000 ($900,000) to help sponsor a 2008 Koons retrospective at Versailles (with fellow Koons collector François Pinault).[35]
Roy Lichtenstein – three comic strip paintings (1962–65) and his 1969 abstraction of a mirror. In November 1994, Broad purchased “I…I’m Sorry” for $2.5 million USD at a Sotheby’s auction, paid with his American Express credit card, and thereby earned 2.5 million frequent flyer miles.

Robert Rauschenberg – 1954 red abstraction.
Damien Hirst – Away From the Flock.[36]
Edward Ruscha’s first word painting, “Boss” (1961) and his 1964 picture of Norm’s La Cienega Boulevard restaurant on fire.
Cindy Sherman – twelve photographs from 1977–150 photographs. The Broads have the world’s largest collection of Sherman’s works.
David Smith – Cubi XXVIII, executed in 1965. Broad’s October 2005 purchase at a Sotheby’s auction set a contemporary art auction record of $23,816,000.[34] Broad claimed he had “been looking for a Cubi for more than a decade…I knew it would go way over the estimate and I was prepared, frankly, to pay more than what I bid.” [37]
Andy Warhol’s advertising image, “Where’s your rupture?”, two Marilyn Monroe images, a twenty-fold silkscreen of Jackie Kennedy, an Elvis, a dance diagram, a wanted poster, an electric chair and a torn Campbell’s soup can—pepper pot (purchased for $11.8 million)[34] – all from 1961 to 1967.

Boris (Bidzina) Ivanishvili
RANK 4 AMOUNT (US$) 1bn RATIO OF ART 15.6% FULL NAME Boris (Bidzina) Ivanishvili ESTIMATED NET WORTH 6.4 Billion

Recently Ivanishvili became the subject of some interest in the art world, following his reported purchases of works by Pablo Picasso[15] and the contemporary artist Peter Doig at auctions for prices well above their estimates.[5]

François Pinault

Pinault’s holding company Artemis S.A., owns (or owned), among others, Converse shoes, Samsonite luggage, Château Latour, the Vail Ski Resort in Colorado, and Christie’s auction house.

RANK 5 AMOUNT (US$) 1bn RATIO OF ART 10.1% FULL NAME François Pinault ESTIMATED NET WORTH 9.9 Billion

Art collector

Pinault owns one of the biggest collections of contemporary art worldwide. On the magazine ArtReview’s 2006 list of most powerful people in modern art, he was ranked in first place.[4] In 2006 he obtained the ownership of Palazzo Grassi in Venice to display the collection.[5] He has collected works by Damien Hirst.[6]

French tycoon heads art power list (Friday 13 October 2006)
Tate director is highest-placed Briton on contemporary top 100

“1: François Pinault, owner of Gucci and Christies, also owns around 2,000 pieces of contemporary art which he displays in his private gallery in a Venetian palace”

“That being the case, Mr Pinault may be doubly happy today. His long-term business rival Bernard Arnault, chairman of the luxury goods group LVMH, does not feature on the list at all, despite having announced plans earlier this month to build a €100m (£67m) art museum in Paris, designed by the architect Frank Gehry.”

“The most surprising inclusion on this list, at number 100, is the search engine Google. Mr Weich insisted it was not a joke. “Many of the curators we speak to have mentioned the potential of [the photo-sharing site] Flickr as a viable exhibition area – that in a few years from now they’ll be curating online to millions of viewers.

“And while we quickly concluded that Flickr has a way to go yet, it did make us realise how much we rely on Google for our art information. In a strange way, the number of hits an artist, curator or even a dealer gets can legitimise him in the same way it can anyone else.” ”

Nasser D. Khalili
RANK 6 AMOUNT (US$) 930m RATIO OF ART 56.3% FULL NAME Nasser D. Khalili ESTIMATED NET WORTH 2.3 Billion

Professor Nasser D. Khalili PhD, KCSS, KCFO (Persian: ناصر داوود خلیلی‎, born 18 December 1945 in Esfahan) is a British-Iranian world-renowned scholar, collector and philanthropist based in London. He holds United Kingdom citizenship.[2] Khalili has often been called the “cultural ambassador of Islam” by leaders of Muslim countries.


Since 1970 he has assembled, under the auspices of the Khalili Family Trust, six of the world’s finest and most comprehensive art collections: The Arts of the Islamic World (700-2000), Japanese Art of the Meiji Period (1868-1912), Three Hundred Years of Japanese Kimono (1700-2000), Swedish Textiles (1700-1900), Spanish Damascened Metalwork (1850-1900) and Enamels of the World (1700-2000). Together, the six collections comprise some 25,000 works. Each of the six collections is on its own merit the largest and most comprehensive in the world.[5] His Islamic art collection extends to 20,000 items and is the largest of its kind held privately in the world.[6]

The Khalili Collections are fully represented in a series of over 40 volumes, of which 90% have already been published. Selections from each Collection have been exhibited in over 35 world-class museums, such as the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, the Alhambra Palace in Granada, the Portland Art Museum in the USA and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Key objects have been loaned to more than 40 different museums and institutions, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, USA to Somerset House London, England. “Arts of Islam: Treasures from the Nasser D Khalili Collection” was shown in 2007 at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, in 2008 at Gallery One at the Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, in 2009 at the Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris, and in December 2010 – April 2011 at De Nieuwe Kerk International Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam. “The Enamels of the World (1700-2000)” opened on December 2009 until April 2010 at the State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg. His Japanese art

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