The Most Influential Galleries in the World

Even during the digital age, galleries are still ahead of art, artists, and the sale of art. In this article, you can find out which galleries are certainly among the most influential ones in the world. Our journey goes from Paris and Salzburg via London to New York and Los Angeles.

Galleries in Europe: Yvon Lambert and Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac

In the mid-1960s, collector Yvon Lambert founded a gallery to showcase the most innovative Parisian artists. In the 1970s, American artists such as Robert Ryman and Jean-Michel Basquiat joined this gallery. In 2003, Lambert established his international representation by founding a new gallery in Chelsea, New York City. The Yvon Lambert Collection – founded in 2000 – shows over 350 the most impressive works from his private art collection.

Galleries in the USA
Galleries in the USA

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac was founded in Austria in 1983, and it quickly established a strong and respectful reputation in the international art scene. The gallery represents about 60 artists and a large number of significant estates. Its exhibition spaces are themselves works of art, including a Paris branch and a villa in the famous London’s Mayfair district.

In 1990, the owner opened the first branch gallery in Paris. For the 30 years anniversary in Paris, the exhibition presented Peter Halley, Jeff Koons and Sturtevant as well as many other well-known artists in 2020. Artists from different generations, artistic movements and cultural backgrounds reflect the diversity of the gallery’s programme.

Galleries in the USA: Paula Cooper and Blum & Po

Paula Cooper was the first art gallery in Soho, New York and opened in 1968. Paula Cooper presents sophisticated contemporary art to a wide audience. The focus of the gallery is on conceptual and minimalistic art. Besides the artistic programme of the gallery, it regularly hosts concerts, performances, poetry readings, and special events to benefit various national and local organizations.

Moving on, since its founding in 1994 by Tim Blum and Jeff Poe, Blum & Poe continues to be an essential part of the Los Angeles art scene. The gallery has shown courage from the very beginning, always presenting progressive, unconventional exhibitions. Blum & Poe’s first exhibition was an installation by Anya Gallaccio, in which the artist spread chocolate on the walls of the gallery. Today you can visit the gallery not only in Los Angeles but also in Tokyo and New York. Artists represented here include Alma and Theodora Allen, Darren Bader, Pia Camil, Robert Colescott, Carroll Dunham, Tomoo Gokita, Julian Hoeber, and many others.

Lisson Gallery

Founded in 1967 by Nicholas Logsdail, the Lisson Gallery now represents more than 50 of the most innovative contemporary artists, including Ai Weiwei, Sol Lewitt, Laure Prouvost, Anish Kapoor, Donald Judd, John Latham, and Marina Abramović. Today you can see branches of the gallery in London, New York and Shanghai. An interesting fact: Lisson Gallery organizes an artists’ retreat in a renovated palm oil factory on Lamu Island, an exotic island off the east coast of Africa.