Lio Malca is a renowned art collector, gallerist and hotelier with projects in New York (USA), Ibiza (Spain) and Tulum (Mexico).
Malca has been collecting art fervently since the early 90s. Lio’s collection is centered around the acquisition of works that defy the established historical narratives of high art. He always intends to blur the boundaries between the academic and institutional, and the urban and popular.
Lio was an early visionary of Basquiat's work when Basquiat was only recognized by smaller circles in the art world. Malca was also an early collector of artists such as Keith Haring, Kenny Scharf and George Condo, all iconic figures of the street art and contemporary art movements. He was a consistent supporter of their emerging art markets, and today holds an important vertical collection of Haring’s work.
Later, he began to collect work from Lowbrow artists such as Mark Ryden and Marion Peck. He has acquired works by Latin American artists, holding large vertical collections of Vik Muniz and Oscar Muñoz. Malca was one of the early supporters of these artists, and owns hundreds of works by them. Malca has also acquired works by African and European artists, such as Jacob El Hanani from Morocco and Zilvinas Kempinas from Lithuania.
Since 2002, Malca has been collecting contemporary art from Asian artists. He has notably large and important collections by Hiroshi Sugimoto and Nobuyoshi Araki. He has also acquired important works by Keiichi Tanaami, Yue Minjun and Misake Kawai, among others.
As a collector, Malca’s artistic inclinations grow in accordance with the contemporary avant-garde. Recently, he has become interested in artists who incorporate new technology into their work, collecting works by artists such as Brody Condon, Joanie Lemercier, Marco Brambilla, and Quayola. While valuing technological developments in the art world, Malca maintains an appreciation for 20th century artists already held in high regard, such as the Italian-Mexican surrealist Pedro Friedeberg. Malca holds more than 100 works by Friedeberg in his collection.
Most recently Lio has been collecting works by young emerging artists, such as Rafa Macarron, Pedro Pedro, Genesis Belanger, JJ Manford and Eva Beresin, among others.
Besides personal taste and enjoyment, Lio’s rationale behind collecting some of these artists in depth is to put together complete museum exhibitions that can be shown to the public. Lio believes that collecting art automatically comes with the responsibility of making artworks available for museum exhibitions, established institutions, and the public at large.