Great Collectors: David Rockefeller

In our first post from our series on great art collectors, we commemorate David Rockefeller, who passed away at the age of 101 on Monday, 20th March. A lifelong patron of the arts, Rockefeller began collecting art under the mentorship of Alfred Barr, founding director of MoMA, New York. He went on to amass an extensive collection of some 15,000 works of art, objet d’art, and antiquities. Having donated his parent’s collection to New York’s Asia Society, he also founded the JPMorgan Chase Art Collection. In 1994, MoMA held an exhibition on a selection of Rockefeller’s collection, with twenty-one works of art given by the patron to the museum. On the occasion of his 100th birthday, he pledged a $100 million bequest to MoMA, then the largest donation in the museum’s history. Here, we present ‘White Centre (Yellow, Pink, and Lavender Rose)’ by Mark Rothko in 1950. The painting resided in Rockefeller’s collection for forty-seven years until its sale at Sotheby’s, New York, in 2007 for record-breaking amount. Rockefeller said, ‘I think of Art as the highest level of creativity. To me, it is one of the greatest sources of enjoyment.’