Alexis Gregory was born in Switzerland to Russian parents and was educated in the United States, graduating in art history magna cum laude from Harvard University in 1957. He founded and owned The Vendome Press, a book publishing house with a special commitment to the fine arts, music, architecture and culture in general. He was co-publisher of the Journal of Art, served as a member of Sotheby’s Advisory Board and was on the Visiting Committee of Paintings at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Fogg Museum. He established the Alexis Gregory Foundation which is devoted to the fine arts and music. Mr. Gregory served for three years as Chairman of the American Friends of the Israel Museum.
He wrote several books on travel and the gilded age and contributed to many magazines including The Journal of Art, Art and Auction, Vanity Fair, Condé-Nast Traveler, Travel Holiday, Town and Country and Air France Madame. Among his celebrated books are The Golden Age of Travel, Families of Fortune, Paris de Luxe on the Place Vendôme and In the Spirit of Venice.
Over the years, Mr. Gregory built a major collection of Italian Renaissance bronzes, and collected French and Italian old master pictures of the 17th and 18th centuries as well as French 18th and 19th century paintings. He was Chevalier of France’s highest civilian decoration, the Legion d’Honneur, and an officer of France’s Order of Arts and Letters as well as a Cavalliere al’Merito della Reppublica Italiana. The last decoration was given in recognition of his services to the Italian publishing industry.
He founded the Vendome Prize in 2000, a piano competition described by Le Figaro as “the most prestigious in the world”. Mr. Gregory provided financial support and artistic guidance to numerous exceptionally talented musicians and served on several boards of classical music institutions in the U.S.A. and abroad.
Portrait of Alexis Gregory © Gustav Alink