Openings Poland

Oligarch opens museum in Warsaw

Collector Marek Roefler shows off Polish art with French accent

Villa La Fleur, Warsaw

london. Polish businessman and art collector Marek Roefler opened a private art museum, albeit with limited access, in a Warsaw suburb in May. A renovated, turn-of-the-century building, Villa La Fleur, houses Roefler’s extensive collection of Ecole de Paris works, mainly by artists of Polish descent working in Paris before the first world war. The collection comprises around 1,000 works by artists including Eugene Zak, Mela Muter, Leopold Gottlieb, Zygmunt Józef Menkes and Henri Hayden. Works by Tamara de Lempicka and Joachim Weingart are also on display, as are a number of international artists such as Emanuel Mané-Katz and Léopold Survage.

Roefler has been collecting the Ecole de Paris works for more than a decade, acquiring most of his collection through international auction houses and commercial galleries in France, England, Germany, Switzerland, the US and Israel. “The works of Polish Ecole de Paris artists are scattered all over the world,” says Roefler. “Through my collection, I was able to bring many of them back to Poland.” His interest in the movement was inspired by the collections of former tennis star-turned-dealer Wojciech Fibak and antiques dealer Marek Mielniczuk.

Roefler collects the work of mainly Polish artists to contribute to Poland’s sense of its national identity. “Through the destruction and robbery of so much art in the second world war, Poland does not have the same sense of continuity of more affluent European countries,” he says. “My collection is a way of tracing back our roots.”

The collection and museum is financed by Roefler and by the real estate company Dantex, of which he is the founder and chief executive.

While projects such as his are common in former communist countries such as Russia or Ukraine, Villa La Fleur is an almost unprecedented example in Poland, a country whose cultural institutions are traditionally exclusively state-controlled. While Villa La Fleur is currently accessible by appointment only, Roefler plans to establish regular opening hours in the future.

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Comments

8 Nov 10
2:20 CET

KENIGER, PARIS

The painters from the ecole de Paris were mainly from polish descent and they were also jewish. They are part of the polish heritage and the jewish heritage from Poland. These artists spoke polish and/or yiddish. It remind us when Poland was a multi ethnic state

4 Oct 10
14:50 CET

JOHNNY, WARSAW

Funny thing, no mention of that in Polish local press. or so scarce i have missed it.

22 Aug 10
17:52 CET

BILJANA BERAN, SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA

It is finely time to share with West that East part of Europe is quality like they are. Thank you Mr. Roefler to be a patron of the world history. Biljana Beran, owner of Galeria JAN, La Jolla , Est. 1986 in Sarajevo Bosnia, now from 1996 located in La Jolla, California. www.galeriajan.com

19 Aug 10
18:34 CET

ELIZABETH SOBCZYNSKI, LONDON

This is a wonderful news that may change the outlook and appreciation of the Polish art which is so little know in the West. Congratulations and thank you Mr. Roefler. You are a super star! Elizabeth Elizabeth Sobczynski, ACR Conservation Consultant to the Government Art Collection, Tate Gallery and The Henry Moore Foundation Voitek Conservation of Works of Art 9 Whitehorse Mews Westminster Bridge Rd London SE1 7QD U.K. Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7928 6094

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