Tinder Co-Founder Wants to Start a Collection—But Will the Artwork Be Sexy?

It's time to swipe right on the art world.

Sean Rad. Photo: Tommaso Boddi.

Tapping into Silicon Valley tech money seems to be every art dealer’s goal these days, as evidenced by the onslaught of West Coast art fairs like Art Silicon Valley and the Seattle Art Fair. So far, unfortunately, there hasn’t been much pickup from Silicon Valley’s newly-minted unicorns, who seem more keen to spend their cash on cars, watches, and gadgets. But that may all be about to change: in an interview with the London Evening StandardTinder co-founder Sean Rad has announced that he wants to begin collecting art.

The Art Market Monitor‘s Marion Maneker tipped us off to the remark, which Rad made to the Evening Standard on November 18Matthew Freud, the head of Freud Communications, a UK-based public relations firm, is reportedly Rad’s art advisor. (Freud is business magnate Rupert Murdoch’s son-in-law, and is also a distant relative of artist Lucian Freud.)

A parody Twitter account with the handle @TinderGuysArt has been active since the article published purporting to offer a glimpse into what his collection might look like along with humorous asides like, “It’s time to #swiperight on the #artworld.”

Tinder’s parent company, the Match Group (which also owns the dating sites Match.com and OkCupid), began trading on the New York Stock Exchange for $12 a share on Wednesday, according to Reuters. Rad, the co-founder and current CEO, reportedly owns 10% of the company, so he may have even more money to spend on art in the days to come.

Not everything about the interview was quite as highbrow, however. In the 22 hours since it went to publish, Rad has been raked over the coals by bloggers for his comments about how a “supermodel, someone really, really famous” has been “begging” him for sex. Rad claims he won’t go to bed with her because she isn’t smart enough. “Apparently there’s a term for someone who gets turned on by intellectual stuff. You know, just talking. What’s the word?” he says. “I want to say ‘sodomy’?” (The word, Mr. Rad, is sapiosexual.)

It’s anyone’s guess what kind of art Rad will go onto collect (though he does seem like the perfect candidate for a big, shiny balloon dog), and whether or not his interest will inspire other Silicon Valley hotshots to invest.

For now, quench your burning thirst for answers with our interpretation of what famous artists’ Tinder profiles would look like.


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