Without Heirs, Larry Gagosian Finally Plans for Succession
He and his wife, Liza, are at an age when they’re supposed to be taking control of their own careers.
By David Moller
October 26, 2013
The Gagosians, along with their partners and executives at other prominent New York art dealers, are among the most powerful art dealers in the country. The couple is a fixture since the mid-1990s, when they helped to co-found MOMA, the museum that houses the Museum of Modern Art in midtown Manhattan. Since then, the couple has also been involved in a number of other endeavors, including the Whitney Museum for Contemporary Art; the Pace University School of Arts and Design, which houses the Pace School of Design.
In the past few months, the Gagosians have made waves in the art world—not surprising since they were one of the first to bring the work of an emerging artist to the attention of the public. In particular, the family has used their clout with their partners in the galleries and auction houses to ensure that their clients are successful. The Gagosians’ relationship with dealers has been a contentious issue for years, but it took the recent announcement of the family’s intention to move from Chelsea galleries in New York to focus on their work with art collectors at the new Modern/Decades gallery in SoHo to bring renewed attention to the issues of power, as well as potential conflicts of interest.
In the past, the Gagosians were criticized for being a controlling figure in the galleries and for being on the wrong side of any given artist, whom they helped with sales and publicity.
“The Gagosian Collection has been the home to some of the most significant artists of the last 60 years, including Andy Warhol, Francis Bacon, and Keith Haring,” said Michael Govan, director of the Gagosian galleries. “The Gagosians have always demonstrated an extraordinary capacity to bring great artists to the attention of a larger public, in particular through our galleries.”
But the Gagosian family has also been praised for