Bohen Foundation Gives Major Collection

Bohen Foundation Gives Major Collection


Gift Includes Video, Photography, New Media, and Installation Art by Established and Emerging Artists

NEW YORK, NY—December 17, 2001—Peter B. Lewis, Chairman of the Board, and Thomas Krens, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, today announced a major gift of an important collection of contemporary art from The Bohen Foundation. The collection comprises approximately 275 works by 45 established and emerging artists working in a variety of media, including video, photography, painting, sculpture, new media, and installation art. Among the artists represented in the collection with major media works are Willie Doherty, Pierre Huyghe, Shirin Neshat, Inigo Manglano-Ovalle, Diana Thater, Jane and Louise Wilson, and Sam Taylor-Wood. The gift builds on previous donations by The Bohen Foundation to the Guggenheim, including significant media installations by Vito Acconci, Stan Douglas, Steve McQueen, Nam June Paik, and Bill Viola.

"This outstanding gift from The Bohen Foundation brings the museum's contemporary collection to an entirely new level," said Mr. Krens. "With signature works by leading artists in the field, including many commissioned by The Bohen Foundation and its president, Frederick B. Henry, this gift will enable the Guggenheim to more fully represent important developments in contemporary art in our global exhibition program. It also augments and enhances our already strong collection of contemporary photography, painting, and sculpture." Mr. Krens continued, "The Bohen Foundation's engagement with contemporary art in its more challenging forms—including film, video, new media, and installation—is truly exceptional. It provides a critical model for cultural institutions committed to the collection, presentation, and preservation of work involving the moving image and new media. The quality of the individual artworks defines a collection that will have a lasting and important place in the museum for future generations of curators, scholars, and museum visitors."

The Bohen Foundation collection focuses on artists whose work employs a variety of media and materials to respond to the complex social and physical forces that shape our world. The gift also includes major additions to the museum's holdings of works by Lewis Baltz, Marco Brambilla, Sophie Calle, Peter Campus, Damien Hirst, Joseph Kosuth, Jac Leirner, Glenn Ligon, Sally Mann, Vik Muniz, Pipilotti Rist, Michal Rovner, Tom Sachs, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Mike and Doug Starn, and Francesc Torres.

The Bohen Foundation is a non-profit organization whose primary activity is the commissioning of new works of art with particular emphasis on film, video, new media, and installation. Since 1993, the Bohen Foundation and its president, Mr. Henry, have been actively engaged with the Guggenheim. They have contributed significantly in building the museum's collections, funding acquisitions by both contemporary and emerging artists, and commissioning new works, most recently Nam June Paik's laser-based, site-specific Jacob's Ladder and Sweet and Sublime (both 2000), for the museum's rotunda as part of the exhibition The Worlds of Nam June Paik. In 1996, The Bohen Foundation provided a pivotal three-year grant to establish the Film and Media Arts Program at the museum, and has continued to support its activities, among them the funding for the creation of the Guggenheim Virtual Museum. In 1994, on the occasion of the Robert Morris retrospective at the Guggenheim, the Foundation provided a grant for the film and video documentation of the restaging of seminal Robert Morris performances from the 1960s.

Mr. Henry said, "This gift is a natural outgrowth of the Foundation's relationship to the Guggenheim over the last decade. It comes at a time when the Guggenheim's focus on its permanent collection has become even more important. It is very gratifying to support the Guggenheim and its future in this way."

Many of the works from The Bohen Foundation gift will be on view in a forthcoming exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum, opening in June 2002, featuring contemporary work from the permanent collection.

December 11, 2001

For Press Information: Betsy Ennis, Public Affairs
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Telephone: (212) 423-3842
Telefax: (212) 423-3787

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