Sean Kelly’s Collect Wisely

Featuring Sean Kelly

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Sean Kelly began his career in England as an artist, subsequently serving as a museum curator and director before relocating to New York where he established his eponymous gallery in 1991. Over the course of more than twenty-five years, the Gallery has garnered international attention for its collaborations with renowned cultural institutions, coordinating hundreds of exhibitions on behalf of its artists at an array of prestigious museums. The Gallery has become a symbol for high quality, thought provoking contemporary art and conversation, most recently with the launch of Collect Wisely in May 2018. Collect Wisely is an overarching advertising, podcast, social media, and event driven campaign aimed at refocusing the discourse around collecting to return to the heart of the matter: discussing art, artists, and a passion for collecting and connoisseurship. Sean is equally committed to education, human rights and social justice issues, making the gallery available free of charge to educational advocacy groups and school tours throughout the year. Recently Sean and his wife Mary Kelly donated their extensive James Joyce collection to The Morgan Library & Museum. Sean currently serves on the board of PEN America where he is the Co-Chair of the annual PEN Literary Gala.

About Collect Wisely
Sean Kelly is delighted to premiere a provocative new media campaign designed to encourage lively discussion around the topic of collecting and connoisseurship. Launched on May 2, 2018, Collect Wisely’s aim is to question the art world status quo and an increasing preoccupation with short-term monetary interests, to refocus the dialogue around core values centered upon art, artists, a passion for collecting and issues of connoisseurship.

Collect Wisely asks what it means to be a collector today, if that has changed over time, and where the future of collecting is headed. Issues of patronage, connoisseurship, emotional connectivity, and engagement with a long-term historical view are traditionally of central concern to collectors. How are these mores shifting? Collect Wisely is a call to action, a far-reaching initiative geared toward bringing together individuals, institutions, and galleries to build a vital community and inspire future generations to focus on a wide-ranging and meaningful investment in culture.

This dynamic initiative will include print and digital platforms, social media outreach, and artist-led events. An integral component of the campaign will be a monthly podcast series in which a diverse array of collectors will be interviewed about their passion for art and the motivations and enthusiasms that guide their personal stories. These informal conversations will be hosted on the new Collect Wisely section of and select podcast sharing platforms.