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Pauline Karpidas (born Manchester) is an English contemporary art collector, private art space benefactor, socialite,[1] and patron of the arts.

Karpidas was married to Constantine Karpidas a Greek shipping magnate. She was introduced to contemporary art by Athens art dealer Alexander Iolas in 1975.

In 2009, she auctioned the Andy Warhol painting 200 One Dollar Bills, which she had bought with her late husband Constantine Karpidas. Characterizing the 1962 painting, art dealer Tony Shafrazi said, "We’ve seen nothing like this recently [come to auction], this is a masterpiece." The Karpidases paid $385,000 for the painting at a 1986 Sotheby’s sale. After a dramatic "bidding war" the painting realized $43.8 million.[2][3][4] Karpidas made more than 100 times what had been paid in 1986.[5]

Karpidas is a patron of young artists whose work she displays at her workshop gallery on Hydra, Greece. Each Summer, since 1999 the London-based collector hosts over 100 guests on the Greek island of Hydra to view the latest additions to her Ophiuchus Collection on display at her Hydra Workshop.[6]

She is a benefactor of the Tate and the Sir John Soane Museum in London, and an education centre at New York’s New Museum is named after her and her late husband—The Pauline and Constantine Karpidas Education Center.[7] In a 2007 interview with journalist Marina Fokidis, Karpidas said of her Hydra Gallery,

Having lived now for almost 35 years in Greece, and having been part of the Greek heritage through my marriage to my late husband, Constantine Karpidas, this is a way for me to continue his legacy, his involvement with and support of the arts.[8]

In 2008, Karpidas has presented the work many artists at her Hydra Workshop in Hydra, Greece, including Urs Fischer (2007), Carroll Dunham (2008),[9] Nate Lowman (2010) and Ryan Sullivan (2013).

In 2012, Karpidas donated a vast sum of money to the University of Manchester, particularly to the Manchester Access Programme.This includes the prestigious Karpidas Excellence Scholarship.


  1. ^ http://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/person/mp93422/pauline-karpidas
  2. ^ Unattributed, "Andy Warhol's 200 One Dollar Bills silkscreen sold for $43.8m The Daily Telegraph, november 12, 2009
  3. ^ Colin Gleadell, "Art market news The Daily Telegraph, November 17, 2009
  4. ^ Marion Manaker, "More on Karpidas Art Market Monitor, November 17, 2009.
  5. ^ Lindsay Pollock and Philip Boroff "Warhol’s ‘200 One Dollar Bills’ Fetches $43.8 Million in N.Y.," Bloomberg, November 12, 2009
  6. ^ Rachel Chandler, "Nate Lowman in Hydra," The New York Times, July 27, 2009
  7. ^ Colin Gleadell Art market news The Daily Telegraph, November 17, 2009
  8. ^ Katerina Gregos, "Hellenic Contemporary. The Modern Identity of Greek Art" Flash Art, Summer 2007
  9. ^ Unattributed, "Diary, The Art Newspaper, June 4, 2008


  • Coles, Sadie & Karpidas, Pauline (ed.) Package Holiday: New British Art in the Ophiuchus Collection (1997) Works by Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin, Sam Taylor-Wood, Gary Hume, Angus Fairhurst, Paul Noble, Sarah Lucas, Don Brown, Chris Ofili, Richard Patterson, Peter Doig

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pauline_Karpidas — Please support Wikipedia.
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41 news items


Fri, 15 Aug 2014 05:45:13 -0700

Recently Hydra has become especially beloved by the contemporary art world courtesy of patron extraordinaire Pauline Karpidas, who for the last 16 years has worked with gallerist Sadie Coles – and latterly her son Panos – to organise annual exhibitions ...

The Independent

The Independent
Sat, 14 Feb 2015 16:03:37 -0800

For the past 18 years, Johnnie Shand Kydd has photographed the art scene as they let their hair down on the Greek island of Hydra each summer. Invited to stay with the contemporary-art collector Pauline Karpidas one weekend a year, artists, curators ...

D Magazine

D Magazine
Sun, 26 Jul 2015 20:20:59 -0700

While Pauline Karpidas is often listed among the most powerful collectors in the world by Art+Auction, those who know her describe her as a warm and eccentric personality whose love of art is born not of the prestige-driven art world, but rather of a ...
Dallas Morning News
Sat, 18 Jul 2015 14:26:55 -0700

The London collector Pauline Karpidas and her Dallas-based son and daughter-in-law are behind it. The Karpidas Collection of Contemporary Art is so important globally that this opening is keenly anticipated. Another, called Site131, is being built by ...
New York Times (blog)
Wed, 03 Aug 2011 07:01:21 -0700

It was amid scores of stray kittens, luggage-hauling donkeys and posters of Sevigny languishing in the 100-degree July heat that I arrived in Hydra for an altogether more intimate art tradition: the opening of the British patron Pauline Karpidas's ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Sat, 14 Feb 2015 00:00:22 -0800

Art benefactor Pauline Karpidas, now a Greek billionaire but once a Lancashire lass, has donated substantial artworks from the 60s and 70s.“She loves it that everybody comes here,” says Maria Balshaw, the Whitworth's vibrant director. “This is ...

The Guardian

The Guardian
Mon, 16 Feb 2015 02:05:28 -0800

At a packed dinner in the Grand Hall on Friday night, the billionaire philanthropist and art patron Pauline Karpidas, originally a Manchester lass, was squished in elbow-to-elbow with Antony Gormley, Susie Orbach and Jeanette Winterson. Apologies to my ...

artnet News

artnet News
Tue, 17 Feb 2015 23:52:30 -0800

Every summer since 1999 Shand Kydd photographed artists, curators and writers who have been invited to vacation at the British art collector Pauline Karpidas' holiday home on the Greek island of Hydra. The shots capture intimate moments between several ...

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