Frank Lloyd, Gilbert Lloyd, and Francis Bacon

Frank Lloyd, Gilbert Lloyd, and Francis Bacon among a group of people leaving the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. Image: Marlborough Gallery.

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The Modern and Contemporary-focused art dealership, with galleries in London, New York, Madrid and Barcelona, has announced it will shut this summer.

From early June this year, Marlborough will “no longer present exhibitions or represent artists and estates in the primary art market”.

Its inventory, assembled over decades, will be dispersed over the coming months and years. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to not-for-profit cultural institutions that support Contemporary artists.

Founded in 1946 as Marlborough Fine Art in London by Frank Lloyd (a Jewish immigrant who had fled his native Austria in 1938 and served in the British Army during the war) and Harry Fischer (an expatriate Austrian rare books dealer), they were later joined by David Somerset, (who later became the Duke of Beaufort).

The gallery initially focused on French Impressionism, Post-Impressionism and Modern works but under Lloyd’s leadership moved into representing Contemporary artists of the day including Post-war greats Francis Bacon, Frank Auerbach, Ben Nicholson, Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth.

Marlborough Fine Art

Marlborough Fine Art in 1960 at 39 Old Bond Street, London. Image: Marlborough Gallery.

As well as selling the thousands of artworks in the Marlborough inventory, ranging from works on paper and photographs to canvases by more than 50 artists, the gallery will sell its premises in New York, London and Spain.

It said additional information about the winding down process will be announced in the coming months.

Franz Plutschow, a member of the board of trustees and a close, long-time associate of the gallery’s founders, said: “After long and careful consideration, we made the decision that now is the time to sunset our nearly 80-year-old firm. We are profoundly grateful to all the artists who have been at the heart of Marlborough Gallery and integral to its storied legacy. We are indebted to our expert and dedicated employees, including those who will continue to work with us as we now wind down the business.

“As we do so, we are mindful that the extraordinary breadth and depth of our inventory testifies to the relationships formed over the decades with some of the most important artists of the modern era.”