It’s a long-running debate: where is the center of the contemporary art world? Is it New York, Los Angeles, London? Or perhaps an upstart like Berlin or Mexico City? Decide for yourself by visiting these 10 phenomenal art galleries around the world, all favorites of The Agency…
Representing such art celebrities as Tracey Emin, Gilbert & George and Marc Quinn, White Cube was the original home of the now legendary Young British Artists (YBAs). Their headline-generating, museum-quality shows are accompanied not just by buying frenzies, but by educational programs and artist lectures as well.
Another powerhouse in the art world, Gagosian has put on museum-quality shows with high-caliber artists since 1979. Damien Hirst, Yayoi Kusama, John Currin and Jeff Koons are just a few of the celebs they rep. There are now 11 Gagosians worldwide, three in New York; two in London; and one in Beverly Hills, Rome, Athens, Paris, Geneva and Hong Kong.
Marc is a long-trusted advisor to art connoisseurs and collectors, and his gallery presents a diverse and exceptional program, ranging from the most blue-chip artists to just-emerging talent. The former garage space was designed by Frederick Fisher and Partners, across from Maison Martin Margiela and the Peninsula Hotel on Little Santa Monica, and one can always find special and unexpected treasures in the back room.
Emmanuel Perrotin started his career as an art dealer at 21, and he made a big splash in his early years, introducing Paris to artists such as Takashi Murakami and Maurizio Cattlelan. Today, some 20 years later, he continues to represent the artists who made his gallery a world-renowned name, as well as a roster of fresh new talent from as far afield as Africa and South America.
There are more than 400 art venues in Chelsea to choose from, but David Zwirner stands out among the pack. The gallery’s collection of contemporary artists is influential, to say the least. Zwirner has helped launch the careers of Luc Tuymans, Marcel Dzama, Raoul De Keyser and Neo Raunch, just to name a few. Don’t miss this vast, well-curated gallery next time you’re in New York.
Hauser & Wirth has galleries in London, New York and Zurich, but their Zurich flagship is the best. Louise Bourgeois, Paul McCarthy, Rashid Johnson… the gallery’s client list reads like a who’s who in the contemporary art world. For twenty years, Hauser & Wirth has designed and put on genre-bending exhibitions, performances, lectures and more. Their shows are truly cutting-edge.
An upstart gallery at the top of the LA art scene, with names like Barry McGee, George Condo, Os Gemeos to their credit, Prism made a name for themselves with creative exhibitions of rising street art talents. They regularly alter or repaint their gallery space to make an exhibition more dynamic, realizing that it’s the work – and not just the gallery name – that must stand out.
Just seven years old, but now a household name in the Berlin art world, Peres Projects has become an exciting crucible of art, fashion, cinema and celebrity over the last few years. The gallery’s founder, Javier Peres, remains something of a legend around town, known as much for his personality and oversized parties as for his enviable stable of contemporary artists. This gallery is a phenomenal place to find emerging artists before they become art-world celebrities.
Copenhagen has a young but thriving art scene, thanks to galleries like V1, which represents Dearraindrop, Peter Funch and Anika Lori among other international and emerging artists. Most of their shows lean in the direction of street art at the moment, but this gallery continues to grow and evolve, promising to be a major international player.
Mexico City is one of the most exciting places for contemporary art these days, and one of the most significant galleries is Kurimanzutto. Housed in a re-purposed lumber yard, the gallery is hip, political and relevant, showing some of the biggest artists to come out of Latin America in recent years, including Rirkrit Tiravanija, Damián Ortega and Carlos Amorales.