One of the byproducts of the information age is the longer institutional memory created by the easily accessble records available on the web. After a several years of rumors that various artist’s markets were dominated by one group or another, we’re now beginning to see reporters connect the dots. Here John Varoli covers the new exhibition of an Oligarch’s art that reveals who paid an aggressive price for a Modigliani at the beginning of this art boom:
Vyacheslav Kantor, 55, said in a Moscow interview that the Geneva show will feature 40 of the 400 artworks he has acquired over 10 years, each of “museum quality.” “My collection has three main principles,” said Kantor, wearing a pin-stripe suit and tie. “To collect art connected to Russia, artists who are Jewish, and artists who were major innovators in the 20th century.”
The Swiss show features Modigliani’s “Seated Girl in a Black Dress” (1918) that Kantor bought at Sotheby’s in 2000 for $15.6 million, on a top estimate of $12 million; Chaim Soutine’s “Le Patissier de Cagnes” (1923); Chagall’s “Le Clown Musicien” (1938); and Rothko’s “Portrait of Joe Liss” (1939).