The art world officially has a new power couple. Two of the world’s top collectors—Dasha Zhukova, the Russian heiress and founder of Moscow’s Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, and Stavros Niarchos, heir to a Greek shipping fortune—married in Paris last weekend, just ahead of one of Europe’s most important art fairs, FIAC. Us Weekly first reported the news.
Zhukova is no stranger to being one of a duo of contemporary art’s major players. From 2008 to 2017, she was married to another of the world’s top collectors, Roman Abramovich. He has been listed on the ARTnews Top 200 Collectors each year since 2008, and from 2011 to 2016 the two were listed as a couple. They called it quits in August 2017, and ARTnews has listed them individually since the 2017 list, published each September.
Niarchos comes from a dynasty of Greek collectors who made their fortune in the shipping industry. His father, Philip S. Niarchos, was listed on the Top 200 Collectors list each year from 2001 until 2016, and his grandfather and namesake, Stavros Niarchos, was listed four times in the early 1990s. Beginning in 2017, ARTnews has listed the Niarchos family every year.
Over the years, the Niarchos clan has scoped up some of the market’s highest-priced artworks, including Pablo Picasso’s famed Yo, Picasso (1901) for $47.8 million in 1989, Vincent van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear (1889) for $71.5 million also in 1989, and Andy Warhol’s Green Burning Car I (1963) for $71.7 million in 2007, a record auction price for a work by the artist at the time.
Zhukova is a major supporter of contemporary Russian art, in particular, as well as global work. She is a founding board member of the recently opened New York arts space, the Shed, a project with a total cost of a whopping $475 million.
The couple was first spotted together in December 2017 during the VIP previews of Art Basel Miami Beach in Florida, and Niarchos proposed to Zhukova over this past summer.
The list of attendees at their wedding was a who’s who of the art world, including dealer Larry Gagosian and artist Dustin Yellin, as well as other celebrities such as David Beckham, Liv Tyler, designer Tory Burch, and journalist Derek Blasberg, a longtime confidante of Zhukova’s.