Advisor Elizabeth Von Habsburg shares her collecting philosophy


One particular could be forgiven for wondering that currently being Austrian royalty is the most intriguing thing about a person. But that is not the circumstance with Elizabeth von Habsburg. Apart from acquiring many a long time of encounter in the art globe and working as the managing director of the art appraisal and advisory firm the Winston Art Group, she and her spouse Géza von Habsburg have a dynamic and historically varied assortment of art. Their holdings extend from extremely-modern day canvases that swim in surreal technicolour to classical sculptures and a fossilised sea creature from the Eocene epoch.

For von Habsburg, amassing art is a social dialogue involving her and the get the job done. In some cases, she states, a piece speaks to her straight away, although with many others the dialogue has to go on right up until she and the get the job done can uncover popular ground. Nevertheless she goes about deciding on the operates in her collection, she is the photograph of the modern collector. There are no boundaries or eras or intervals one need to stick to, as she sees it, no have to have to box oneself in. From the modern day to the historical, nothing issues other than that the get the job done speaks to you.

Von Hapsburg was on the board of the Appraisers Affiliation of The usa from 2003-15, served as board member and chair of the Appraisal Basis in 2014 and is a revealed writer, editor and regular lecturer.

The Artwork Newspaper: What was the very first work you acquired?

Elizabeth von Habsburg: We had been blessed more than enough to expend summers in London and across the street on South Audley [in Mayfair] was a gallery that bought watercolours. I was passionate [about] every little thing to do with horses and identified a tiny work by Charles Cooper Henderson. I believe it was £15. It nonetheless brings a smile and pleasure each time I glimpse at it.

What is your most modern obtain?

Shopping for art is like assembly a new buddy. Sometimes you click on quickly other situations it is a more time course of action. Two functions I purchased at Nada New York in May perhaps were quick and permanently good friends: Pere Llobera’s Ogino Knaus [2020] and Rajni Perera’s Floating Pores and skin [2022].

If your property was on fire, which get the job done would you conserve?

Can I decide a number of? Our superb and remarkable get the job done by Stephen Thorpe, a vivid and gorgeous portray by Amir Fallah, our 40-million-calendar year-previous fossilised fish (other than it weighs more than 100 kilos!), a Meiji bronze rat, a Roman chimera in bronze and a portrait of my husband’s excellent-great-good grandfather, Emperor Franz Joseph.

If money ended up no object, what would be your desire order?

No problem: St Francis in the Desert [1476-78] by Giovanni Bellini at the Frick Collection in New York City. Not positive they would appreciate that, having said that.

What is the most surprising location you have displayed a function?

That would be the 18th-century Augsburg brass compass and sundial that sits in the motor vehicle for when all the contemporary electronics are unsuccessful.

Which artists, dead or alive, would you invite to your aspiration evening meal party?

I could fill a stadium, but below are just a couple of lots of: Robert and Sonia Delaunay, Benozzo Gozzoli [painter of the Renaissance fresco cycle in the Palazzo Medici Riccardi], Julie Mehretu, Shahzia Sikander, Brian Donnelly [KAWS], Banksy, Hunt Slonem, Georgia O’Keeffe, Religion Ringgold, Amir Fallah, Stephen Thorpe, Hans Holbein, Robert Campin [who painted the Mérode Altarpiece, 1427-8], Tracey Emin, Andrew Ntshabele, Jan van Eyck and Élisabeth Vigée le Brun.

What is the finest amassing assistance you’ve been provided?

Be humble and inquire concerns. Believe about buying performs that have a thread that connects them.

What did you miss most all through lockdown?

Speaking to artists, gallerists, friends, colleagues, clients and relatives confront to facial area, and viewing artwork initially-hand. The first exhibition I noticed following lockdown was the Julie Mehretu exhibit at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Each and every colour, form, sound and picture was a pleasure.

Have you purchased an NFT?

I bought a digital puppy at Nada New York, does that rely?

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