Great Collectors Of Our Time: Art Collecting Since 1945
- Antique Collectors' Club Ltd
- Publication Date:
- 01 November 2007
- Exhibition Catalogues & Specific Collections
"Great Collectors of Our Time" is the first major survey of contemporary collecting and collectors since Douglas Cooper's "Great Private Collections", published in 1963. It examines many of the greatest collectors of our time in Europe, North America and the Far East, and follows their tastes - whether in the Old Masters or the avant garde - from the 20th century into the 21st. In 1945, Paris was still the cultural capital of the world, but its culture was being increasingly challenged by America. American collecting was soon to pull up its European anchor and move across the Atlantic, in growing acceptance of America's own art, the decline in the domination of three European schools of art - Italian Renaissance, English 18th century and French 19th century Impressionism - and the rise of the New York School and contemporary art.Prior to 1939, collecting was a private pleasure, sometimes intellectual and scholarly, but more often about enhancing surroundings - 'la douceur de vivre'. Today, collecting often has a public dimension, with many collectors feeling a moral imperative to share their works of art with the public, not least when these works are on a scale far beyond that of domestic living: Saatchi, Getty and Sainsbury are names we now associate readily with public collections and museums. There are as many different kinds of collectors as there are collections - from the very rich to the only moderately rich, whether dealer-collectors, publishers, couturiers, or even a post office clerk with a passion for collecting every bit the equal of a tycoon.James Stourton guides us with great verve around the astonishing collections created in our time and explores the motivation behind them. He includes collecting dynasties such as the Rothschilds, Gettys, Thyssens, Rockefellers and Mellons, among others; and larger-than-life figures such as Peggy Guggenheim, Yves Saint Laurent, Picasso, Pierre Rosenberg, Robert and Lisa Sainsbury, Charles Saatchi and Andrew Lloyd Webber. The collections themselves contain cultural treasures that have captured the imagination, from the most ancient tribal artefacts to the newest installations in today's art world. This original and far-reaching survey features many collectors who have spoken about their collections here for the first time. Magnificently illustrated throughout, with favourite images often selected by the owners themselves, this book will appeal to anyone interested in art and in the extraordinary people who collect it.