Dasha Zhukova

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Dasha Zhukova
Native name Дарья Александровна Жукова
Born Darya Alexandrovna Zhukova
(1981-06-08) 8 June 1981 (age 35)
Moscow, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Nationality Russian
Education University of California, Santa Barbara (B.A. 2004)
Spouse(s) Roman Abramovich (m. 2008)
Children 2
Parent(s) Alexander Zhukov and Yelena Zhukova

Darya "Dasha" Alexandrovna Zhukova (Russian: Дарья Александровна Жукова; born 8 June 1981) is a Russian businesswoman, art collector, magazine editor, and founder of the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art and Garage Magazine. She is married to Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich.

Early life and education[edit]

Zhukova was born as Darya Alexandrovna Zhukova in Moscow on 8 June 1981.[1] Her father is Alexander Zhukov, an oil trader.[1][2] Her mother is Yelena Zhukova, a Russian scientist of molecular biology.[1][2] Her parents separated when she was 3.[3] In 1991, she moved with her mother to the United States, settling in the Houston area as her mother had relocated due to work.[1][2][3] They would later move to Los Angeles, California.[2][3]

Zhukova attended a Jewish day-school in California.[4] She attended Pacific Hills School and graduated in 1999. She graduated with honours from the University of California, Santa Barbara with degrees in Slavic Studies and Literature. After becoming involved with Roman Abramovich, she returned to Moscow and later moved to London, where she entered London’s College of Naturopathic Medicine. She did not complete the programme.[5][6]


Zhukova co-founded the fashion label Kova & T in 2006, and she also sits on the board of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), an organization she has given generously to.[3][5]

In 2008, Ms Zhukova founded the Garage Center for Contemporary Culture in Moscow, a nonprofit organization supporting the advancement of contemporary art and culture in Russia and abroad. In 2012, the Center launched the first comprehensive art-education program and public archive of Russian art in the country. In 2014, the institution changed its name to Garage Museum of Contemporary Art and, the following year, moved to its first permanent home, in Gorky Park. The building, designed by Rem Koolhaas, is a preservation project that has transformed a 1968 Soviet Modernist restaurant into a radical space for exhibitions, publishing, research, and education.[7][8]

Ms Zhukova is the creative director of New Holland Island in St Petersburg, overseeing the commercial and architectural development of the eight-acre island in the heart of the city.[citation needed] The island was created by Peter the Great and has lain vacant for almost 300 years. Known now as “art island”, the development will include cultural spaces, as well as commercial and residential property.

In February 2009, Zhukova was appointed editor-in-chief of the fashion magazine Pop. Many in the industry saw her as an unlikely replacement for launch editor Katie Grand.[3] The experiment lasted three issues, and she resigned from that position in November 2010.[9][10]

In addition, Ms Zhukova is the editor in chief of Garage Magazine, a biannual print publication that focuses on the collaboration between contemporary art and fashion. She also sits on the board of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and is a founding member of the Culture Shed in New York.

In 2011, GARAGE Magazine was launched by Ms Zhukova, who serves as the editor-in-chief.[citation needed] The magazine took its name and spirit from Garage Museum of Contemporary Art in Moscow - the groundbreaking international art institution Zhukova founded in 2008.

Since its inception, GARAGE Magazine has worked with many of the world's most celebrated creators, and initiated an array of global artistic dialogues. Among the magazine's contributors are artists such as Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Nick Knight, Marc Jacobs, Richard Prince, John Baldessari, Inez & Vinoodh, and Patrick Demarchelier.[5][5][11][12]

The Wall Street Journal has mentioned Zhukova's "burgeoning arts empire".[3]

Personal life[edit]

Her husband married in a secret[citation needed] marriage, is Roman Abramovich, a Russian oligarch and the main owner of the private investment company Millhouse LLC. The couple have two children together: a son named Aaron Alexander, born in 2009 and daughter, Leah Lou, born in 2013, both children were born in the USA.[13]

Racist Chair Controversy[edit]

In 2014, a photograph of Zhukova sitting on a chair designed as a mannequin of a black woman was featured on Buro 24/7, an online fashion publication. The photograph was widely criticized as racist. Buro 24/7 promptly cropped the chair out of the photo and Zhukova apologised, describing the chair as artwork and as "commentary on gender and racial politics". Zhukova added, "I utterly abhor racism and would like to apologise to those offended by my participation in this shoot".[14][15][16]


  1. ^ a b c d Sassall, Yeong (22 April 2015). "Women in the arts: Dasha Zhukova". http://www.buro247.com.au. Retrieved 8 January 2016.  External link in |website= (help)
  2. ^ a b c d Ioffe, Julia (27 September 2010). "Garage Mechanics". The New Yorker. New York City. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Helmore, Edward (26 May 2011). "Dasha, Dasha, Dasha". The Wall Street Journal. New York City. Retrieved 8 January 2016. 
  4. ^ Sawyer, Miranda (4 October 2009). "Dasha Zhukova: From It Girl to Art Girl". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c Silva, Horacio (25 February 2010). "Red Hottie". The New York Times. 
  6. ^ Blasberg, Derek (13 August 2012). "Dasha Zhukova: Queen of the Art Scene". Harpers Bazaar. Retrieved 17 November 2014. 
  7. ^ Miller, M.H. (6 September 2011). "Dasha Zhukova Finally Opens the Door to Her Garage". New York Observer. Retrieved 18 November 2014. 
  8. ^ Moore, Rowan (16 July 2015). "You wait ages for a Rem Koolhaas-designed contemporary art space, then two come along at once". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 June 2015. 
  9. ^ Odell, Amy (11 October 2010) Dasha Zhukova Is Leaving Pop – The Cut. Nymag.com. Retrieved on 17 July 2013.
  10. ^ "Dasha Zhukova quits Pop magazine". New York Post (11 November 2010). Retrieved 18 November 2014. 
  11. ^ Cutruzzula, Kara (19 March 2012). "Garage Magazine's Very Modern Nursery-Rhyme Cover". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 18 November 2014. 
  12. ^ Blasberg, Derek (13 August 2012). "Dasha Zhukova: Queen of the Art Scene". Harpers Bazaar. Retrieved 17 November 2014. 
  13. ^ Miami Newsday: "Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich celebrates birth of his seventh child, his second with model Daria Zhukova" 14 April 2013
  14. ^ CHAN, STEPHANIE. "RUSSIAN FASHION EDITOR SITS ON A BLACK PERSON POSING AS A CHAIR; APOLOGIZES" (21 January 2014). The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 15 November 2014. 
  15. ^ Wilson, Julee (20 January 2014). "Garage Magazine Editor-In-Chief Dasha Zhukova Sits On A 'Black Woman' Chair In Shocking Editorial". Huffington Post. Retrieved 15 November 2014. 
  16. ^ Saul, Heather (21 January 2014). "Editor apologises after Dasha Zhukova 'black woman mannequin' chair sparks racism row". The Independent. Retrieved 17 November 2014. 

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