Dealer’s 13-Year-Old Son Snags Rondinone Sculpture for $95,000 at Benefit Auction

In the art world, it never hurts to start 'em early.

Ugo Rondinone, Blue yellow pink mountain (2015). Courtesy of the Swiss Institute.
Ugo Rondinone, Blue yellow pink mountain (2015). Courtesy of the Swiss Institute.

A rousing auction by Simon de Pury at the Swiss Institute gala last week saw an unlikely bidder: gallerist Dominique Lévy’s 13-year-old son, Samuel.

Page Six reports that the so-called “bidder in braces” won a sculpture by Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone for $95,000. Talk about starting them early!

Lévy is a documented fan of Rondinone—in a 2012 profile for W magazine, Linda Yablonsky notes the presence of at least one sculpture by the artist among works by Cindy Sherman, Christopher Wool, and Paul McCarthy in Lévy’s airy Manhattan apartment.

Dominique Levy gives a speech at the Swiss Institute gala. Photo: Instagram/@ferminvil.

Dominique Levy gives a speech at the Swiss Institute gala.
Photo: Instagram/@ferminvil.

According to the artnet Price Database, young Lévy got a great deal on the work. The record for a Rondinone, set at Phillips London in 2011, is approximately $864,340, though most of the sculptures hover between $150,000–250,000.

The evening raised more than $500,000 for the Swiss Institute, a non-profit cultural center established in 1975 to promote ongoing cultural dialogue between the US and Switzerland.

Photo: Instagram/@pjudelson.

Photo: Instagram/@pjudelson.

Swiss-born Lévy was honored at the benefit alongside Pamela Rosenkranz, the artist who represented Switzerland at the most recent Venice Biennial.

Attendees included Marilyn Minter, Yvonne Force Villareal, Marianne Boesky, Francesco Bonami, and Charles Renfro. Also on sale at the auction were works by Raymond Pettibon, Richard Phillips, and Rudolf Stingel.


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