Frank Cohen

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Frank Cohen (born 15 October 1943) is a British entrepreneur. He was the founder of GlynWebb Home Improvement Stores, which was a large chain of Do It Yourself (DIY) stores in the North East, North West, Yorkshire, East Anglia and the Midlands of England, before entering administration in November 2006. Cohen is also a collector of fine art and the co-founder of Dairy Art Centre, in London.

Early life[edit]

Cohen grew up on the outskirts of Manchester and Salford, he has always been obsessed with collecting. However, it wasn’t until he met his wife Cherryl Cohen that his obsession with art began. Having come from an art involved family, Cherryl’s father having been Chairman of the Fine Art Trade Guild, she was very much an influence upon Cohen’s art collecting.

Art collecting[edit]

Cohen is one of the world’s most influential and prolific collectors of international contemporary art.[1] He began collecting Modern British art in the 1970s and in the early 1990s became a patron and supporter of the Young British Artists (YBAs). He also collected American and German art of the 1980s and 1990s, contemporary Japanese art (especially the Superflat movement) and more recently has added contemporary Chinese and Indian art to his interests. Every year he is listed in ARTnews magazine’s list of ‘The World’s Top 200 Collectors’[2] and is often referred to as the Medici of the North.

From 2007 to 2012, Cohen pioneered Initial Access, a foundation in Wolverhampton designed to showcase and promote younger artists from his collection. An exhibition of his Modern British Collection featuring artists such as LS Lowry, Stanley Spencer, Edward Burra and Eduardo Paolozzi was held at Chatsworth in 2012, and he was member of the Turner Prize jury in 2003.

In April 2013, together with fellow art advisor and collector, Nicolai Frahm, Cohen opened the Dairy Art Centre – an independent, non-profit contemporary visual art centre in Bloomsbury.[3] With exhibitions free of charge to the public, an education programme and an internship training scheme, Cohen continues his commitment to providing access to high quality exhibitions by internationally acclaimed artists to a wider audience.


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  3. ^ [1] "Art review: Quicksand John Armleder, The Dairy Art Centre, London" The Independent, 25 April, 2013


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