The year 2013 ends very much as it began: with money at the center of an art world that is increasingly rotten. It was, after all, only late February when we received the following email from a prominent public relations company.


“Hi, I hope you are doing well! I wanted to see if you were interested in profiling my client Peter Hort, son of Susan and Michael Hort, in anticipation of the spring’s upcoming art fairs, including the Armory Show, of which the Hort Family hosts the annual Welcoming Brunch. Peter and his wife Jamie are two of New York’s most notable young art collectors, each born into dynastic art collecting families.

“Peter, along with his mother, father, and siblings, has developed a renowned reputation for collecting works from early to mid-career artists, who later become giants in the contemporary art world. Peter, along with his family, also provide grants to emerging artists without representation through the Rema Hort [Mann] Foundation and have a proven track record of helping develop lesser-known artists into superstars.

“In the last three years artists [Rashid Johnson],Jon Pestoni, Alex [Olson] and Keltie Ferris have all seen their prices more than double. Over the last decade, artists Kehinde Wiley, Elizabeth Peyton, and Richard Prince have seen the value of his[sic] work appreciate by more than 100%. The Hort Family Collection, of which Peter Hort is a part, invested early in each of these artists. The Hort Family has a reputation for creating more value for works they collect.

“In regular finance, if you have insider information about a stock, it is illegal to invest in that stock. In the art world, it is not only legal, it is done regularly. Peter Hort, along with his wife and family, are the people who create the insider information.”