Bloomberg’s Aaron Eglitis spent a little time in Latvia with Mark Rothko’s son who, even though the family maintains a stockpile of very valuable work, isn’t very interested in the prices that his father’s work attract :
“He would think it’s a distraction,” Christopher says in an interview at the Daugavpils Mark Rothko Art Center. “When you have prices that are not simply large, but make headlines, people don’t look at the artwork but at the dollar figures, the pound figures or the euro figures.”
The transfer of works to eastern Latvia comes as the country tries to boost tourism through its ties with Rothko, whose paintings were mainly produced in New York. The art center cost 4 million lati ($7.5 million) to refurbish, about 85 percent of which was provided by the European Commission.
“He really wanted you to have this direct communication with art,” Christopher says of his father before we admire the works on show. “He doesn’t want you to look at the paintings and think about how much it might be worth and how much it might be insured for and all that. He really wants you to have a genuine experience. I think he would not be happy about prices.”