Lindsay Pollock has a story on Bloomberg that raises an obvious question: are the Merkin Rothko’s still for sale?
Financier J. Ezra Merkin’s $310 million collection of Mark Rothko paintings, sold earlier this year to a mystery buyer, will be exhibited at Moscow’s new Garage Center for Contemporary Culture next spring. […] Show organizers Marc Glimcher, of the New York gallery PaceWildenstein, and Garage International Coordinator Mollie Dent-Brocklehurst said Abramovich doesn’t own the artworks. They declined to name the owner.
“It’s one of those beautiful stories,” said Glimcher, seated on a bench at London’s Frieze art fair. “There is one cohesive collection that tells the whole story of Rothko’s mature work, and it was all together, and it changed hands.” The new owner “was presented with this story and the response was absolutely,” he said about arranging the show.
Glimcher represented the estate in the not-fully-completed sale from the Rothko estate of some of the works that made up the Merkin collection. Add the fact that Rothko should have special appeal for Russian buyers, and one can ask whether the mystery owner is the gallery or a buyer looking to make another sale in the not-too-distant future.