twitter facebook
Photo: Agnija Grigule

“Arterritory Conversations with Collectors”, No. 4 is released in Venice 2

A photo-report from the presentation of the fourth issue of “Arterritory Conversations with Collectors”

Photos: Agnija Grigule

This morning at the legendary Cafe Paradiso – a favorite meeting spot during the Venice Art Biennale located next to the entrance to the Giardini, which is where most of the national pavilions are assembled – the art and culture media organization held a celebratory breakfast in honor of the release of the fourth issue of the publication “Arterritory Conversations with Collectors”.

On the terrace of Cafe Paradiso, with its wonderful view of the watery lagoon, noteworthy figures from the art world had gathered: curators, media representatives, gallerists, artists and collectors. Among them were some of the subjects of the publication’s previous issues: Isabelle and Jean-Conrad Lemaître – video-art collectors from France, Michael Klaar – the Austrian collector, and French jewelry collector Diane Venet; also present were some of the individuals featured in the just-released issue: Israeli collector Noemi Givon, Belgian collector Galila Barzilaï Hollander, Argentinian collector Patricia Vergez, Lithuanian collector Vilius Kavaliauskas, and one of the leading figures in contemporary art today – the French sculptor and collector Bernar Venet. Under the slightly overcast Venetian sky, these power-brokers of the art world mingled with prominent figures from the Latvian contemporary art scene: art collectors Māris and Irīna Vītols, and Jānis and Dina Zuzāns, Zane Čulkstēna – the founder of the kim? Contemporary Art Centre, and its current director – Zane Onckule, the director of the Latvian Contemporary Art Centre – Solvita Krese, the Latvian Minister of Culture – Dace Melbārde, architect Zaiga Gaile, and businessman Māris Gailis. International guests included the Austrian gallerist Thaddaeus Ropac, Belgian collector Danute Mallart, Viennese gallerist Ursula Krinzinger, Israeli artist Erez Israeli, Milena Orlova – editor-in-chief of The Art Newspaper Russia, curator and former artistic director of Art Brussels – Katerina Gregos, and arriving fashionably late – the scandalous yet always vibrant French artist ORLAN.

From the left: curator Julien Robson and Alexandre Devals, the director of the Bernar Venet Foundation

Undoubtedly, the central axis of the event was the public talk “Art Belongs to Everybody: The Mission of Giving Back”, which was led by British-American art curator and consultant Julien Robson, and Alexandre Devals – the director of the Bernar Venet Foundation. At the focus of the talk was “the art collector” and what “the collector” perceives as his or her mission. The artist and collector Bernar Venet, whose hub of creative experimentation, study and thought – the Bernar Venet Foundation – is located in the southern French town of Le Muy, states in his interview in the just-released issue No. 4: “This society has given me the chance to do all of this, and I think that by giving it art, in return, is like repaying a debt. That is my conviction. Namely, everything that belongs to me will return to society.”

In the talk, Alexandre Devals pointed out several times that every art collection is like a kind of autobiography that reveals where, when and how the collector’s life has been affected by new encounters and the beginnings of collaborations and friendships. The same could be said of the team behind the magazine – the fourth edition is a compact summary of the previous year’s experiences. As the director of the media organization – Una Meistere, and its editor-in-chief – Daiga Rudzāte, revealed in their opening statement: “In the four years since we started this project, we have conducted 47 interviews and have spent more than 100 hours in conversation.”

Julien Robson, Bernar Venet, Diane Venet and Alexandre Devals

Each issue has brought into the open new aspects of collecting as a passion, and in the last one, a common thread turned out to be responsibility and the desire to share. Much like Bernar Venet, other figures covered in “Arterritory Conversations with Collectors, No. 4” also partake in this generosity: American collector Al Shands has bequeathed his collection to the Speed Art Museum in Louisville upon his passing; Erika and Rolf Hoffmann open the doors of Sammlung Hoffmann to the public once a week; Berlin-based Timo Miettinen has designed his Salon Dahlmann as a publicly accessible cultural space; Patricia and Juan Verges have fashioned the tours of their collection (which is located in a one-time ink factory in Buenos Aires) as emotional experiences that they themselves guide; while the art spaces of Galila Barzilaï Hollander and Frederic de Goldschmidt in Brussels are still under construction. 

Collector Galila Barzilaï Hollander and curator Julien Robson

Collectors Galila Barzilaï Hollander and Noemi Givon

Artist ORLAN

Collector Diane Venet

Collector Bernar Venet

Gallerist Thaddaeus Ropac

Viennese gallerist Ursula Krinzinger

Bernar Venet, Diane Venet and Director of Una Meistere

Israeli collector Noemi Givon, Una Meistere, Israeli artist Erez Israeli

Collector Galila Barzilaï Hollander

Collector Vilius Kavaliauskas

Daiga Rudzāte, Editor in Chief of

Collector Jean-Conrad Lemaître

Martins Vizbulis, architect of Latvian pavilion at the 57th International Art Exhibition in Venice

Alexandre Devals, the Director of the Bernar Venet Foundation

Una Meistere, Director of and Agnese Čivle, English Editor of  of

Collector Juan Verges

Katerina Gregos, Chief Curator of the Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art 2018 (RIBOCA)

Curator Viktor Miziano

Collector Dina Zuzāne

Collector Jānis Zuzāns

Latvian artist Ģirts Muižnieks

Vladimirs Korjagins and Signe Reinholde

Latvian architect Zaiga Gaile

Agnese Čivle and Odrija Fišere, Latvian Editor of

Curator Viktor Miziano

From right: Opera Director Andrejs Žagars, Una Meistere and Daiga Rudzāte

Una Meistere

Latvian architect Austris Mailītis

In the centre: Collector Danute Mallart

From the left: Vladimirs Korjagins, Ainārs Ērglis

Una Meistere

Odrija Fišere and Latvian artist Atis Jākobsons

The first issue of “Arterritory Conversations with Collectors” came out in 2014, and a total of 47 interviews with the world’s leading and most influential art collectors have been published in the series. The magazine provides not only a look into these extraordinary assemblages of art, but also down-to-earth exchanges on how art and the collecting of art has changed the lives and world views of each specific individual. It is a periodical iteration of the fact that art can become an intrinsic part of anyone’s life.

The latest issue contains interviews with 14 art collectors from around the globe: Robert M. Rubin, Erika Hoffmann-Koenige, Noemi Givon, Frédéric de Goldschmidt, Al Shands, Candida Gertler, Amos Schocken, Timo Miettinen, Galila Barzilaï Hollander, Vilius Kavaliauskas, Patricia Vergez, Andrew and Christine Hall, and Bernar Venet.

It is possible to order magazine online here.