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François Pinault, founder of Kering, to open Paris art museum

By Don-Alvin Adegeest

Oct 16, 2019

François Pinault, founder of luxury group Kering, is to open a new contemporary art museum in Paris to house his vast art collection and open a space to presenting new exhibitions and projects open to every artistic discipline.

The 150 million euro museum will be housed at the Bource de Commerce in central Paris and will be Mr Pinault’s third museum in addition to Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana, both in Venice and both designed and renovated by architect Tadao Ando.

With the addition of the Bourse de Commerce, which is due to open in June 2020, the Pinault Collection is committing itself to an ambitious new scale of 3,000 square meters of modular exhibition space that will showcase over 5,000 works of art including artists Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman and Damien Hearst.

The exhibition space will bedivided into rooms from 100 to 600 square meters which can be sized as necessary to welcome large-scale projects. The volumes, which can range in size from intimate to monumental, will be conceived and adapted such that they can most fittingly present works in various scales and different media, from photography to installations, and including painting, sculpture, and video.

An important figure in the French art scene

Mr Pinault is considered one of the most important collectors in the French art world and previously tried to open a museum in his native France, but plans collapsed.

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Pinault is the 22nd richest man in the world, with a net worth of 35 billion dollars.

As the founder of PPR, now Kering, his wealth was accumulated from a luxury portfolio which includes Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta and Balenciaga. In 2003 Mr Pinault stepped away from day-to-day operations and was succeeded by his son, François-Henri, who currently serves as chairman and CEO.

Earlier this year Mr Pinault told the New York Times the Bourse “could be an interesting complement to existing institutions,” because French museums had slow decision-making processes that made it hard for them to buy contemporary art: Prices can quickly inflate while curators and administrators debate acquisitions. “Only a madman like me can decide to buy them fast,” he said.

Images courtesy