Jay Jopling

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Jay Jopling
Born Jeremy Michael Jopling
June 1963 (age 54)
Thirsk, North Yorkshire, England
Alma mater Eton College
University of Edinburgh
Occupation Art dealer, gallerist
Spouse(s) Sam Taylor-Johnson
(m. 1997; div. 2008)
Children 2
Parent(s) Michael Jopling, Baron Jopling

Jeremy Michael "Jay" Jopling (born June 1963) is an English art dealer, gallerist.[1] He is the founder of White Cube and investor in Paddle8.

Early life[edit]

Jay Jopling is the son of Michael Jopling, Baron Jopling, a Conservative politician who served for some time as Minister for Agriculture in the Conservative Government led by Margaret Thatcher.[2] Jopling was brought up in Yorkshire and educated at Eton and the University of Edinburgh, where he studied English Literature and History of Art and his first job was selling fire extinguishers door-to-door.[3] As a university student, Jopling visited Manhattan, where he forged links with post-war American artists, encouraging them to donate works for the charity auction "New Art: New World." In the late 1980s, he formed a friendship with the artist Damien Hirst. Hirst had already sold a number of works to the influential collector Charles Saatchi, but Jopling enabled the artist to realise more ambitious projects including the sculpture "The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living" and more recently the diamond skull "For the Love of God". After completing his M.A. in 1984, he moved to London and began working with the young artists of his generation.


In May 1993 Jopling opened the original White Cube on the first floor of 44 Duke Street, St James, in West End. Located in the most traditional art-dealing street in London, the gallery was surrounded by Old Master galleries, antique dealers and specialist art bookshops. Its exhibition policy was to provide a one-off showcase for both British and international artists. Since then White Cube has presented solo shows of the most challenging British artists over the last two decades including Darren Almond, Jake & Dinos Chapman, Tracey Emin, Lucian Freud, Gilbert & George, Antony Gormley, Mona Hatoum, Damien Hirst, Gary Hume, Runa Islam, Harland Miller, Marc Quinn, Sam Taylor-Wood, Gavin Turk, and Cerith Wyn Evans.[4][5]

A second, larger gallery space was set up by Jopling in April 2000. White Cube Hoxton Square was located in London's East End, in a converted 1920s light industrial building. Its programme of exhibitions expanded to include international artists such as Franz Ackermann, Miroslaw Balka, Ashley Bickerton, Candice Breitz, Chuck Close, Gregory Crewdson, Carroll Dunham, Katharina Fritsch, Sarah Morris, Damián Ortega, Richard Phillips, Robin Rhode, Doris Salcedo, and Fred Tomaselli. The gallery space closed in December 2012.[6]

White Cube Mason's Yard, situated off Duke Street, St James's - home of the original White Cube - opened in 2006. Previously the site of an electricity sub-station, the gallery was the first free-standing structure to be built in historic St James for more than thirty years. The inaugural exhibition presented Gabriel Orozco, and the programme has gone on to include internationally renowned artists such as Georg Baselitz, Andreas Gursky, Robert Irwin, Anselm Kiefer and Jeff Wall.

White Cube Bermondsey, opened in October 2012, and is the largest of the gallery's three sites, providing more than 5440 m2 of interior space. The building dates from the 1970s and was primarily used as a warehouse before the current refurbishment. The gallery includes three exhibition spaces, substantial warehousing, an auditorium, and a bookshop. The "South Galleries" provide the principal display area for White Cube's expanding programme, whilst three smaller galleries, known collectively as the "North Galleries", feature an innovative new programme of exhibitions.

White Cube Hong Kong was the first of White Cube’s galleries to be located outside of the United Kingdom. In the heart of Hong Kong’s Central district, the gallery opened its programme of exhibitions with a show of Gilbert & George in March 2012.

Jopling’s most recent venture was a three-year programme of exhibitions in Brazil. White Cube São Paulo opened in December 2012 with a solo show by Tracey Emin, and went on to show artists such as Anselm Kiefer, Damien Hirst and Julie Mehretu. White Cube São Paulo closed in 2015.

He was named one of GQ's 50 best dressed British men in 2015.[7]


Joplin invested heavily in an online auction platform called Paddle8. Paddle8 merged with competitor online auction house Auctionata in early 2016.[8] By February 2017, Auctionata declared insolvency and Paddle8 became an independent company once again.[9][10]

Personal life[edit]

Jopling was married to artist Sam Taylor-Wood,[11] together they have two daughters, Angelica (born June 1997)[11] and Jessie Phoenix (born November 2005).[11] In September 2008, the couple announced that they were separating amicably after 11 years of marriage.[12][13][14][15]


  1. ^ "Brit art's square dealer moves on" guardian.co.uk. Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  2. ^ Jay Jopling: the man who became a pain in the arts Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  3. ^ Rose Aidin (2002-09-22). "Brit art's square dealer moves on | From the Observer | The Observer". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2011-12-20. 
  4. ^ Whitecube.com Retrieved 18 July 2013.
  5. ^ "About | White Cube". hitecube.com. Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  6. ^ Battersby, Matilda (5 October 2012). "Hoxton to suffer cultural blow as White Cube gallery closes". The Independent. London. 
  7. ^ "50 Best Dressed Men in Britain 2015". GQ. 5 January 2015. Archived from the original on 7 January 2015. 
  8. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/12/business/dealbook/2-online-art-auctioneers-to-merge-and-go-global.html?_r=0
  9. ^ http://observer.com/2017/01/auctionata-files-for-insolvency-investor-will-spin-off-paddle8-top-brass/
  10. ^ https://www.ft.com/content/e4d3ab4e-f9ac-11e6-bd4e-68d53499ed71
  11. ^ a b c Kate Summerscale (15 December 2007). "Sam Taylor-Johnson: the bigger picture". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 22 January 2012. 
  12. ^ Noah, Sherna (20 September 2008). "Art couple Taylor-Wood and Jopling to separate after 11 years' marriage". The Independent. Archived from the original on 25 September 2008. 
  13. ^ Daily Mail Reporter (20 September 2008). "Art's golden couple Sam Taylor-Wood and Jay Jopling split after 11 years of marriage". Daily Mail. 
  14. ^ "The rise and rise of Jay Jopling - Profiles - People". London: The Independent. 2006-09-28. Retrieved 2011-12-20. 
  15. ^ "Entertainment | Powerful art-world marriage ends". BBC News. 2008-09-19. Retrieved 2011-12-20. 

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