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Top 200 Collectors

Black-and-white portrait of a middle-aged white

Marsha and Jeffrey Perelman

Palm Beach, Florida; Wynnewood, Pennsylvania

Manufacturing

Contemporary art; Postwar art

Overview

The financier and investor Jeffrey Perelman, whose business is primarily in the industrial and financial sectors, is on the American Advisory Board at Christie’s, as well as the boards of a number of Philadelphia art institutions, including the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. (Jeffrey is not to be confused with his brother Ronald, who has also appeared on the ARTnews Top 200 Collectors list, and his father Raymond, who died in 2018 and previously appeared on the list.) In his and his wife Marsha’s collection of postwar and contemporary works are including a number of Roy Lichtensteins. Of all the pieces in their collection, Sigmar Polke’s 1967 Dschungel (Jungle) is especially dear. “It replaced what had previously been our favorite painting, a large Twombly chalkboard, but Jungle has now become our favorite,” Jeffrey told ARTnews. “It signifies for us a new direction in our collection, and one which broadens the range of artists and works in which we are interested.” 

Another notable acquisition is an Ellsworth Kelly stainless steel rocker piece from 1986. After purchasing the piece, the Perelmans soon realized a proper installation would require that they build an entirely new plateau in our front yard. The collectors told ARTnews that they only have fond memories of installing the work: “The day it was installed, the large magnolia trees on either side were in full bloom; the installer sent a picture to Ellsworth, who called the next day to let us know how thrilled he was to see it so beautifully placed.” Several years later, the artist came to see his piece in person.

Jeffrey is a die-hard University of Pennsylvania supporter, having earned both his undergraduate and M.B.A. degrees there. He has supported its dental school, its design school, and its Institute for Contemporary Art. Marsha also holds a graduate degree from UPenn.

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