Martin Margulies and His Daughter, Elizabeth, Open Up Their Miami Home
by Ted Loose
In their distinct spheres, Martin Margulies and his daughter, Elizabeth Margulies, quietly but powerfully exert a serious influence over two generations of art collectors. As the founder of the Margulies Collection at the Warehouse, one of a handful of Miami private art spaces that helped elevate the city into a premier destination for collectors, Martin presides over a major cache of blue-chip modern and contemporary works.
“We have a tremendous amount of work,” says Martin of his holdings, which run the gamut from paintings and sculptures by Roy Lichtenstein and Frank Stella to photography by Walker Evans and installations by Barry McGee and Ernesto Neto. “It’s a big collection put together with love and with scholarly enterprise.”
Martin was raised in the New York neighborhood of Washington Heights. After moving to Miami and getting in on the ground floor of the burgeoning city’s real estate market, he started collecting in the 1970s. From there, things moved fast—both his net worth and his collection soared. He set up his private museum in 1998, expanding it several times, and today the 50,000-square-foot space includes a portion of the family’s 4,000 works by some of the most important talents of the 20th and 21st centuries, such as Willem de Kooning and Olafur Eliasson. Photography is a longtime interest and a major element of the collection, with recent shows of Helen Levitt and Stephen Shore drawing an appreciative audience.