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Dikran Garabed Kelekian (1868–1951)
Dikran Garabed Kelekian (1868–1951)

Dikran Garabed Kelekian (also known as Dikran Khan Kélékian) was a collector and dealer of ancient, medieval, and Islamic art. Of Armenian heritage, he was born in Turkey, and with his brother Kevork, he established an antiquities business in Istanbul circa 1892. In the following year, he came to the United States as a commissioner for the Persian pavilion at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. With his brother, he established shops in New York at 709 Fifth Avenue, later at 598 Madison Avenue, and later still at 20 East 57th Street; in Paris at 10, rue Rossini, and later, at 2, Place Vendôme; in London; and in Cairo. He played a substantial role in the formation of the Coptic, Early Christian, and Classical collections of Henry Walters (later founder of the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore) and the Gothic collection of George Blumenthal, a financier and the president of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. He was also well known as an early champion of modern French painters. Kelekian died in January 1951, when he fell from the twenty-first floor of the Hotel St. Moritz in New York.


"Bank to Administer Art Expert’s Estate," New York Times, February 3, 1951.

"Dikran Kelekian," Portrait of the Art World: A Century of ARTnews Photographs, Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery.

Meyer Berger, "Kelekian Plunges 21 Floors to Death: Authority on Near East Was Friend of Collectors and Artists for 50 Years," New York Times, January 31, 1951.

Marianna Shreve Simpson, "'A Gallant Era': Henry Walters, Islamic Art, and the Kelekian Connection," The Journal of the Walters Art Museum 59 (2001): 103–14.