Archives Directory for the History of Collecting in America

Edlis, Stefan

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role Collector
dates 1925-2019
city Chicago
stateIL
other citiesAspen, CO; San Francisco, CA; Vienna, Austria;
gender M
historical notes Stefan Theodore Edlis was a plastics manufacturer (Apollo Plastics), a contemporary art collector, and philanthropist.

Together with his wife, née H. Gael Neeson, Edlis formed a contemporary art collection. Their collection included work by, among others, George Condo, Jeff Koons, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Rauschenberg, Gerhard Richter, Cindy Sherman, Cy Twombly, Piet Mondrian, Maurizio Cattelan, Ugo Rondinone, Urs Fischer, and Andy Warhol.

In The Price of Everything, Edlis discusses the rule he stuck by to manage his collection: “200 works, 40 artists.” Late in his collecting, Edlis preferred to trade works of art rather than buy them.
The Edlis’ donated 42 works, valued at upwards of $400m, to the Art Institute of Chicago. The gift was given under one condition: that the works remain on view for at least 50 years.
decades
of activity
1960-1970
1970-1980
1980-1990
1990-2000
2000-2010
2010-2020
updated 02/07/2020 18:21:29
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