A Tour of Mandy and Cliff Einstein’s Incredible Art Collection

25 Homes in LA Vendome Press
Photo by Firooz Zahedi in City of Angels: Houses and Gardens of Los Angeles, by Firooz Zahedi and Jennifer Ash Rudick.

One day, years after the art collector couple Cliff and Mandy Einstein’s two children were grown, they decided to completely rethink the way they lived in their home in a former Los Angeles avocado grove, which they originally purchased in 1972 and had the architect Ron Goldman refashion into a timeless space. “We wondered what our home would look like if it were transformed into galleries for contemporary art,” Cliff Einstein recalls. “As we discussed this possibility, we realized that we could really make it happen. And we began what became our great adventure together.” Since then, the couple has collected about 200 works, 120 of which are displayed, with others often on loan to museums. “We wish we could see them all at once.” Now a fluid and compelling blend of architecture, art, and landscape, tour the house of one of L.A.’s most powerful art couples, here.


Displayed in the hallway at the top of the stairs are, clockwise from the sculpture on the ledge: Joana Vasconcelos’s Amari, 2012; one of Mai-Thu Perret’s Les Guérillères, 2016; Mark di Suvero’s Way Through, 1989–90; an untitled 1994 painting by Albert Oehlen; Kishio Suga’s Disappeared Space, 2005; and an untitled 1953 painting by John McLaughlin.

Photo by Firooz Zahedi in City of Angels: Houses and Gardens of Los Angeles, by Firooz Zahedi and Jennifer Ash Rudick.

In the center of the far wall hangs Ed and Nancy Kienholz’s Holdin’ the Dog, 1986. To the right is Sam Gilliam’s Mycenaean Ode, 1965. The rusted-steel sculpture below it is Tony Cragg’s Administrative Landscape,1990–91.


The small painting on the wall to the left is Elizabeth Peyton’s Nick Reading Moby Dick, 2003. On the right is an untitled 2000 photograph by Cindy Sherman.


In a hallway, the work on the left is Gilbert and George’s West End, 2001. To the right is an untitled 1975 work by Sigmar Polke.


Over a table set with John Gerrard’s Bone Cutlery from Artware Editions, hangs Mark Bradford’s Zoom, 2007.


John Gerrard’s Bone Cutlery from Artware Editions.


An untitled 1994 painting by Albert Oehlen.


A close-up view of Yayoi Kusama’s Silver Shoes, 1976


Kerry James Marshall’s Club Couple, 2014.


In the study, the painting over the armchair is Carroll Dunham’s Small Bather, 2009–10. On the wall up the stairs is an untitled 1986 work by George Rickey. At right is John Chamberlain’s Cafe Macedonia, 1984.


An untitled 2003 drawing by Mark Grotjahn and, through the doorway on the right, Yayoi Kusama’s Silver Shoes, 1976.


Rashid Johnson’s Thinking of a Master Plan, 2012, hangs next to Juan Muñoz’s Standing Arab at London, 1999


In the bar and seating area of the kitchen, Ed Ruscha’s The Long Wait, 1995, hangs over the bar. Above the fireplace is John Baldessari’s Green Fissure, 1990. The tiled floor and table in front of the sofa are by Marlo Bartels.


Visible through the gallery’s glass walls are two of the most important works in the Einsteins’ collection. To the left is James Turrell’s skyspace Second Meeting, 1985–86, and to the right is Nancy Rubins’s mammoth untitled 1997 sculpture fashioned out of airplane parts.

Photo by Firooz Zahedi in City of Angels: Houses and Gardens of Los Angeles, by Firooz Zahedi and Jennifer Ash Rudick.

Nancy Rubins’s airplane-parts sculpture appears to teeter precariously over the garden and Thomas Houseago’s Dancer II, 2010.


Second Meeting, installed in 1989, was James Turrell’s first freestanding work. Annual maintenance includes repainting the walls with moisture-resistant paint and sanding and oiling the teakwood benches.


Outside James Turrell’s Second Meeting.