The Pinacothèque de Paris is set to expand next year. The gallery, launched in 2007 by Modigliani specialist Marc Restellini for blockbuster temporary shows, has plans to display long-term loans from a group of international collectors in a second building in the French capital. These will form a “permanent collection”, said Restellini, who also revealed details about a five-year partnership with the Hermitage in St Petersburg.
The planned 3,000 sq. m gallery, opposite the current Pinacothèque space in Place de la Madeleine, is set to open by January 2011. “Collectors will loan their works for one, five or ten years,” Restellini told us. “La Pinacothèque is in contact with many collectors around the world. The collection will consist of masterpieces by various artists from all periods of art history, from antiquity to today.”
Security and conservation services offered at the new venue will be a bonus for the collectors involved. “Some collectors own several residences that remain unoccupied for part of the year,” said Restellini. “We can house these works during these periods to help prevent theft. Works can also be restored here as conservation is an important part of the project.”
The Pinacothèque originally opened as a private art space in 2003 but was forced to close the following year. The gallery then reopened in 2007 and is financed by around ten international collectors, whose identities remain secret. Restellini said: “The new space is funded exactly the same way. The same collectors are behind the development.”
He denied there is any commercial aspect to the project, insisting that “the Pinacothèque is a museum”. The current annual operating budget is around E8.5m; admission charges to the Munch exhibition (until 8 August) are E11.50 full price and E9.50 concessions. A joint entry ticket will be available once the second gallery is opened.
The collaboration with the Hermitage includes “joint exhibitions at both Pinacothèque sites and the exchange of works and expertise over the next five years. The contract has been signed,” said Restellini.
Originally appeared in The Art Newspaper as ‘Collectors to create “museum collection”