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The Girlboss Legends Of Art World Business
The ladies running the world's top galleries and museums - and well, kind of the art world as such. ...
Feature 22 Jan 2020

As much as we love going to arty parties and looking at nice paintings all day, the art world is a serious business, just look at the sales being made at Christie’s and Sotheby’s. Behind the scenes, there are a number of gallerists, PRs and directors making all of this happen, with many of them are powerful women. Here we profile the female legends of art and business.  


HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad Al Thani, Chairperson of Qatar Museums 


Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa Bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani pretty much rules the art scene in Qatar. She is Chairperson of Qatar Museums, Doha Film Institute and Qatar Leadership. Through her work she has been able to facilitate conversations across borders and fields. As a public servant, her objective is to invest in Qatar’s local community, and celebrate Qatar’s diversity using the visual arts as a vehicle for communication. Through her public work and support of Qatar Vision 2030, she is building an exciting creative future for Qatar that will connect artistic communities in all areas of culture. 


Marian Goodman, Founder Marian Goodman Gallery


When Marian Goodman studied art history at Columbia University in 1963, she was the only woman in her class. She opened Multiples, a business that dealt with prints and artists’ editions in 1965, going on to found her eponymous gallery in New York in 1977, and is still running it in her 90s! The gallery is one of the world’s most respected, and now also has outposts in Paris and London. Amongst the artists she has worked with are Joseph Beuys, Gerhard Richter, Steve McQueen and Maurizio Cattelan.


Dasha Zhukova, Founder Garage Museum of Contemporary Art and Garage Magazine


Dasha Zhukova founded non-profit Garage Center for Contemporary Art in Moscow in 2008. Its space in Gorky Park was designed by Rem Koolhaas and is not just a museum, but also a space for education, publishing and research. In addition, Dasha is also the creative director of St. Petersburg’s New Holland Island, an island that has been vacant for three centuries, and which is now being transformed into an art island. As if that wasn’t enough, Dasha is also editor-in-chief of Garage magazine, which was founded in 2011 as a space for collaboration between art and fashion. 


Dominique Levy, Founder Levy Gorvy Gallery


Dominique Levy is co-founder of Levy Gorvy. Having begun as an intern at Christie’s in New York, she went on to work at Sotheby’s in her native Switzerland before working with various art dealers in Paris and London, and then ultimately returning to Christie’s in New York. In 2003 she founded an art advisory service, opening her eponymous gallery in 2013. In 2017, Dominique partnered with Brett Gorvy, co-founding Levy Gorvy in London, New York and Hong Kong. Amongst their artists are Frank Stella and the estate of Yves Klein.


Victoria Siddall, Director Frieze Fairs


Victoria Siddall joined Frieze in 2004 after having previously worked at Christie’s as a proposals writer. Beginning as Head of Development of Frieze, she went on to taking the Director role within ten years. She launched Frieze Masters in London in 2012 and now runs Frieze London, Frieze New York, Frieze Masters and Frieze Los Angeles. As well as overseeing one of the world’s most important art fairs, Victoria is also chair of the board of trustrees of London’s Studio Voltaire.


Sara Fitzmaurice, Founder Fitz & Co


Sara Fitzmaurice founded Fitz & Co, the world’s leading art PR firm in 1995. With clients including Art Basel, Sharjah Art Foundation and Gagosian, Sara’s influence is global. FITZ & CO’s unique area of expertise is international media relations, strategic positioning and planning, audience development, sponsorship development and special events. In addition to being the leading art PR for a quarter of a century, Sara is also on the board of New York City’s Public Art Fund.


Jinqing Caroline Cai, President Christie’s China


Jinqing Cai held Christie’s first auction in China in 2013, earning $25 million. Before working at Christie’s, she worked in public relations and communications businesses across Asia. She began at Christie’s in 2012, and under her leadership Christie’s China outpost has opened new galleries and made record-breaking sales figures.


Rachel Lehmann, Co-founder Lehmann Maupin Gallery


Rachel Lehmann began her career at New York’s Sonnabend Gallery, before founding first space in Switzerland in 1988. Her first partnership with David Maupin was Offshore Gallery in East Hampton, New York, before opening Lehmann Maupin in 1996, which now has spaces in Hong Kong and Seoul, and will open a viewing room in London this year. 


Text Lizzy Vartanian

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