from The Telegraph UK

Charles Saatchi: secret life of a collector laid bare

With the publication of a new book, the publicity shy art collector Charles Saatchi answers questions about art, pornography and sleeping pills.

Published: 5:29PM BST 07 Sep 2009

Charles Saatchi and Nigella Lawson

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Do artists deserve to get as rich as Damien Hirst, who I read is worth £100 million?

Only if you think of art as entertainment, in which case his pay scale sits alongside Tiger Woods, Harrison Ford, Roger Federer, Johnny Depp, Madonna and the other superstars.

Do you have colours you dislike, that you find put you off a painting?

Not really. But paintings with skulls or children’s dolls put me off. Celebrity faces are only OK if your name is Warhol. Scribbled words are only OK if your name is Twombly. Harlequins are only OK if your name is Picasso.

You are meant to be tyrannical about installing the art in your exhibitions, and don’t let artists interfere. Why?

There are very few people who know how to install art. David Sylvester was a master and we talked of little else except how inept most artists are at showing their work to best advantage. Sadly, nearly all professional curators are caught short in this deptartment.

I may not be much good at most things, but if I didn’t have the pleasure of planning and installing shows, and doing it better than anyone else, I would have stopped buying art many years ago.

Apologies if that sounds a shade immodest, but there it is.

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