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Art 101

The Many, Many Art-World Offspring of London Dealer Anthony D’Offay


The Many, Many Art-World Offspring of London Dealer Anthony D’Offay
Anthony d'Offay at home

Did anyone in the art world not work for Anthony d’Offay? A cornerstone of the London art scene, the dealer ran a blue-chip gallery network in the city from 1969 to 2001, representing artists like Gerhard Richter, Maurizio Cattelan, Bill Viola, and Rineke Dijkstra while also staging scholarly presentations of historical midcentury work. But what’s truly extraordinary about d’Offay is how many prominent figures in the art world passed through his operation at one point or another, typically early in their careers. A young Damien Hirst ported other artists’ work around, a young Gavin Brown clerked in the back room, a young Stefania Bortolami sat in on marathon brainstorming sessions—even an art-collecting princess couldn’t resist putting in some time at the gallery.

After closing his shop over a decade ago, d’Offay made history by donating a $160 million collection of over 1,000 works of contemporary art to the Tate and Scotland’s National Galleries to launch an ongoing “Artists Rooms” series of exhibitions curated from the rich holdings. But it’s possible that the his greatest legacy is the number of top international gallerists that he launched—as Bortolami puts it, “He was like his own Sotheby’s program for dealers.” Below is a roundup of some of the figures who went through his gallery.

Sadie Coles — founder of Sadie Coles HQ gallery (London)
Simon Lee — founder of Simon Lee Gallery (London)
Lorcan O’Neill — founder of Galleria Lorcan O’Neill (Rome)
Matthew Marks — founder of Matthew Marks Gallery (New York)
Gavin Brown — founder of Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (New York)
Darren Almond — artist
Tanya Bonakdar — founder of Tanya Bonakdar Gallery (New York)
Peter Freeman — founder of Peter Freeman, Inc. gallery (New York)
James Cohan — founder of James Cohan Gallery (New York)
Dominique Levy — founder of Dominque Levy Gallery (New York)
Mark Fletcher — art advisor (New York)
Stefania Bortolami — founder of Bortolami Gallery (New York)
Damien Hirst — artist 
Thomas Campbell — director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York)
Robert Violette — founder of Violette Editions (London)
Josephine Pryde — artist
Glenn McMillan — co-founder of CRG Gallery (New York)
Graham Southern — co-founder of Blain|Southern gallery (London)
Martin Creed — artist
Lora Reynolds — founder of Lora Reynolds Gallery (Austin)
Paul Morris — co-founder of the Armory Show, now founder of the Chosen art fair (New York)
Kerstin Engholm — founder of Kerstin Engholm Gallery (Wien, Austria)
Julia Klüser — managing director of Galerie Klüser (Munich)
Alexandra of Greece — princess (Greece)
Richard Desroche — co-founder of CRG Gallery (New York)
Robin Vousden — director at Gagosian’s London gallery
Joanna Thornberry — director at Lisson Gallery (London)
Mark Francis — director at Gagosian’s London gallery
Pauline Daly — director at Sadie Coles HQ (London)
Margot Heller — director at South London Gallery (London)
Don Brown — artist
Kate Zamet — co-founder of Ritter/Zamet gallery (London)
Phillida Reid — co-founder of Southard Reid Gallery (London)
Susanna Greeves — independent curator (London)
Polly Robinson — art advisor (London)


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