The art market gossip mill isn’t doing a very good job tracking down the buyer of the Merkin art trove. Alexandra Peers resorts to guessing in her Culture Vulture post on the subject:
Buyers approached about taking the collection include the Beyeler Foundation, a prestigious Swiss museum of contemporary art which is now run by former Art Basel Miami director Sam Keller. Also likely to have been approached were officials of the Guggenheim Museum Abu Dhabi, currently under construction, and Qatar museum officials, according to insiders. (Several museums in the United Arab Emirates region are under construction or aggressively adding to their collections). One art appraiser suggests that the Rothko family itself may have purchased the works, they would have been eager to prevent a slew of his pieces coming to the market at once, with depressing prices.
Did Merkin Sell His Rothkos for More than They Were Worth? (Culture Vulture/New York)