In a statement, the magazine gave the Sheikha’s “sheer buying power” as the reason for her nomination.
It is estimated that the 30-year-old, who heads the Qatar Museums Authority (QMA), spends approximately USD 1 billion a year on works of art, “roughly 30 times what MoMA [the Museum of Modern Art in New York] spent . . . and 175 times what the Tate invested,” according to ArtReview.
She first appeared in the magazine’s “Power 100” list in 2011 at number 90, in the year Chinese artist and dissident Ai Weiwei was at number one. Last year, the Sheikha rose to 11th place.
In a statement to Reuters, ArtReview editor Mark Rappolt said: “I think the figures definitely speak for themselves and of the importance she has for the art market.”
“I also think in some ways you could say that the Qatari Museums Authority is symptomatic of a global art culture in which art is culturally exchangeable,” he added.
Under the Sheikha’s chairmanship, the QMA has embarked on major efforts to enrich Qatar’s cultural scene. In 2008, she unveiled the Museum of Islamic Art in the country’s capital, Doha.
Furthermore, the QMA sponsored Tate Modern’s Damien Hirst exhibition in September 2012, attracting more than 463,000 visitors. Skeikha Mayassa made Hirst the world’s highest grossing living artist in 2007 after purchasing his piece, Lullaby Spring Pill Cabinet.
Sheikha Mayassa was made known last year after Vanity Fair disclosed that she had purchased Cézanne’s The Card Players for USD 250 million (GBP 158.4 million), making it the highest-priced piece of artwork ever.
Sheikha Mayassa was trailed by American art dealers David Zwirner and Iwan Wirth in second and third place respectively.