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Patronage is the support of an artist, museum,
charity, event or institution through the giving of money or endorsing the
person or organization. For example, if someone gave financial aid to a
struggling artist in order to further their work, this person would be
considered a patron. Patrons of the art have greatly affected the world,
molding it into the one we live in today. Without the commissions or support
that patrons have offered to artists, we would be without incredibly meaningful
and sometimes even defining works of art.

One patron in history is Peggy Guggenheim.
Guggenheim was born in New York and grew up wealthy, with her uncle opening the
Guggenheim Museum. When she reached adulthood, she moved to Europe and opened
an art gallery of her own. She returned to America due to the war and opened
another art gallery called Art of This Century, in New York’s capital,
Manhattan. Although many individuals chose to simply buy and show art at their
galleries, Guggenheim went above and beyond, ensuring that she took care of
several struggling artists – endorsing and giving financial assistance so that
they may focus on their art endeavours. Guggenheim is often described as having
quite a vibrant and unapologetic personality. She seemed far more concerned
with the art than she ever did the money that she received as earnings from the
museum or galleries. She showed many major artists in the art world, such as
Jackson Pollock and was even married to Max Ernst, another famous artist.
Guggenheim was passionate not only about the artwork itself but also those who
created it. In  a time when women were
not allowed to express themselves, Peggy Guggenheim did just that – showing all
of her beloved art at her museums. Guggenheim allowed the world to see what others
have created, through her several galleries.

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Anthony d’Offay was another known art patron.
He was a british art dealer who gathered many different works by several
artists such as Joseph Beuys. When he closed his gallery some years ago, he
continued to add to his number of artworks and eventually donated them to the
Natiaonal Galleries of Scotland and Tate. His collection was incredibly large
and has been deemed the Artist Rooms, with each room belonging to a different
artist. Although d’Offay contributed such an incredible collection, he was in
fact paid what was still a very large sum for his donation. d’Offay had a
reputation for not getting along with artists and entering into great
disagreements with them that eventually resulted in them terminating their
relationship. Grayson Perry, another artist, displayed two black pottery
penises and calling it the Portrait of Anthony d’Offay. Although this patron
did not seem to leave many bridges unburned, it cannot be ignored that he
influenced the world of art greatly with his incredibly generous donation to
the galleries. 

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