New York Art Dealer Fatally Stabbed in Rio Home

New York City renowned art dealer Brent Sikkema was discovered lifeless in his Rio de Janeiro residence this week, local authorities disclosed on Tuesday. 

The 75-year-old, known for his extensive contributions to the art world, was reportedly a victim of a fatal stabbing using a sharp implement, as indicated by Brazilian media accounts.

Sikkema had chosen the affluent locale of Jardim Botânico, nestled near the Tijuca forest, as his living space, referring to it as an urban “oasis” in a 2022 interview with Idea Fix magazine. 

The Brazilian national police, overseeing the investigation, declared Sikkema’s demise a homicide. Despite this classification, specific details surrounding the incident are currently sparse.

Responding to a call on Monday evening, firefighters arrived at Sikkema’s apartment, where evidence suggested he had sustained injuries inflicted by a sharp object, according to reports from Brazilian newspaper O Globo. 

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New York Art Dealer’s Tragic Rio Death Raises Questions

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New York City renowned art dealer Brent Sikkema was discovered lifeless in his Rio de Janeiro residence this week, local authorities disclosed on Tuesday.

New York art dealer Brent Sikkema’s tragic death in Rio has raised unsettling possibilities, as CNN Brasil suggested potential weapons, including scissors, a box cutter, or a screwdriver, while G1 reported a prevailing theory that points to a robbery.

Sikkema’s legacy spans over five decades in the art realm, marked by the establishment of his contemporary art gallery, Wooster Gardens, in Manhattan in 1991.

Despite the gallery undergoing relocations and name changes, Sikkema remained an influential figure. Throughout his illustrious career, he served as the representative for renowned artists such as Kara Walker, Jeffrey Gibson, and Vik Muniz.

His gallery, now operating under the name Sikkema Jenkins & Co., issued a poignant statement on Tuesday regarding his untimely demise. 

Business partners Meg Malloy and Michael Jenkins conveyed their deep sorrow, writing, “It is with great sadness that the gallery announces the passing of our beloved founder. The gallery grieves this tremendous loss and will continue on in his spirit,” as reported to The New York Times. 

The void left by Sikkema’s departure resonates not only in the art community, but also in the hearts of those who cherished him as a colleague and friend.

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