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Top 200 Collectors

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

Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani

Doha, Qatar; London; New York

Inheritance and investments (Qatar Investment Authority)

Contemporary art; Modern art; Postwar art


Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani is the former prime minister of Qatar and a member of the powerful—and wealthy—Al Thani family. The Al Thanis have been amassing a huge collection of artwork—ranging from traditional Islamic artifacts to masterpieces of modern and contemporary art—for more than 20 years. Little is known about Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber’s personal collection, but the family as a whole owns a wide collection of Islamic, Roman, and Egyptian art and antiques and has reportedly spent more than $1 billion acquiring works of Western painting and sculpture over the last two decades.

Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber was rumored to be the buyer of Picasso’s 1955 painting Femmes d’Alger (Version “O”) from a Christie’s sale in 2015; at $179.4 million, the winning bid set a then-record for the most expensive single artwork ever sold at auction. Anonymous art world sources told the New York Post the billionaire former Qatari Prime Minister was on the other line of the winning bid represented by Brett Gorvy, then the international head of contemporary art for Christie’s. According to the source, it would “almost certainly” not go on display in Qatar given the explicit content.

Called “the man who bought London” by the London Independent in 2013, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber reportedly owns some of the English capital’s most expensive property. The Post also has reported that the former ruler bought real estate mogul and fellow Top 200 collector Aby J. Rosen’s East 71st Street mansion for $47 million in 2012.