Why Did Hirst & Co. Leave? A Look Back at Gagosian Artist Defections

Dec 18, 2012 4:00PM

When news broke recently that three of Larry Gagosian’s biggest artists — Yayoi Kusama,Damien Hirst, and Jeff Koons — were defecting from the gallery in one way or another, it challenged the dealer’s reputation as “the leading Lothario” in the “courtship wars” over top artists, as the New York Times once put it. It’s a title he has earned for moves like convincing sculptor John Chamberlain to end his 30-year relationship with Pace, doubling John Currin’s prices after recruiting him from Andrea Rosen in 2003, and offering German painterAlbert Oehlen a greater “global presence” than London dealer Thomas Dane last year.

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Jenna Gribbon, Luncheon on the grass, a recurring dream, 2020. Jenna Gribbon, April studio, parting glance, 2021. Jenna Gribbon, Silver Tongue, 2019