It’s not really a news story, but Bloomberg wants to remind us that Bernard Arnault hasn’t lost his commitment to art even while the banks may be losing theirs:
The billionaire chairman of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA is pressing ahead with plans for a 100 million-euro ($140 million) art foundation. [ . . . ] “If French billionaires want to make museums, even it’s for their own glory, I’m all in favor, especially if the public benefits,” says Didier Rykner, an art historian who [ . . .] led a petition against the Louvre Museum’s future offshoot in Abu Dhabi.
Since 1991, LVMH has sponsored more than 30 major exhibitions, including on Cezanne, Chardin, turn-of-the-century Vienna, and Giacometti. In New York, LVMH backed “Richard Serra Sculpture: Forty Years” at the Museum of Modern Art last year. In China, it supported an exhibition of French Impressionist Masters in 2004-5 and it is staging a Beijing show on Chinese artists inspired by Christian Dior fashions. By 2010 or 2011, the Louis Vuitton Foundation in western Paris will open to present LVMH’s own collection and hold one-off shows. [ . . . ]
The foundation will be located on a 1,000 square-kilometer patch inside the Jardin d’acclimatation, in Paris’s Bois de Boulogne, where a bowling alley stood. Shaped like a cluster of translucent, wind-blown sails, it will be run by Suzanne Page, who previously ran the Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris.
LVMH’s Arnault Plans Museum as Companies Review Arts Spending (Bloomberg)