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Hauser & Wirth Announces Independent Non-Profit Institute Devoted to Art Historical Scholarship and the Preservation and Accessibility of Artists’ Archives (via press release)

 Franz Kline, Wanamaker Block, 1955.Y ale University Art Gallery, Gift of Richard Brown Baker, B.A. 1935. © 2018 The Franz Kline Estate / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Franz Kline, Wanamaker Block, 1955.Y ale University Art Gallery, Gift of Richard Brown Baker, B.A. 1935. © 2018 The Franz Kline Estate / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

New York - Iwan Wirth, President and Manuela Wirth, Co-Founders of Hauser & Wirth, and Marc Payot, Partner and Vice President, today announced the establishment of Hauser & Wirth Institute, an independent non-profit 501(c)(3) private operating foundation dedicated to supporting art historical scholarship and to preserving and advancing the legacies of modern and contemporary artists through enabling greater public access to their archives for research.

To pursue its mission, the Institute will create a study center for the preservation, expedient cataloguing, and digitization of primary research materials for direct study and free online public access to these resources. It will seek to nurture innovation and substance in art historical research through the funding of fellowships in partnership with artists’ estates, foundations, and educational institutions. Another core activity of the Institute will be the production of online catalogues raisonnés and print publications that advance the highest academic standards in order to strengthen the field of modern and contemporary art history. The organization will also present public programs, including exhibitions of archival material and symposia that engage scholars, archivists, artists, collectors, curators, estate managers, gallerists, and the general public in dialogues about the obligations and opportunities inherent in archive stewardship.

The activities of Hauser & Wirth Institute will include both projects connected with artists represented by Hauser & Wirth and artists who are unaffiliated with the gallery.

The Institute is under the leadership of Executive Director Jennifer Gross, formerly Chief Curator and Deputy Director of deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln, Massachusetts. Previous to her work at deCordova, Gross served as Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Yale University Art Gallery in New Haven, Connecticut; Curator of Contemporary Art at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Massachusetts; and Founding Director of the Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art in Portland, Maine.

Hauser & Wirth Institute is governed by a Board of Directors with guidance provided by an independent Advisory Board of artists, advisors to artists’ estates, scholars, and archivists.

“The work of Hauser & Wirth Institute is a natural extension of our gallery’s support of living artists and the noteworthy estates and foundations we have represented for over 25 years,” Iwan Wirth said. “The art world has accelerated and globalized its exhibition and publishing activities so dramatically. In creating the Institute, we hope to make resources available to support similar growth in the areas of art historical research and the sharing of essential knowledge that fuel a richer understanding of art, artists, and the creative processes central to the history of culture for future generations. We are honored to have the opportunity to create an organization to do this work, and so grateful to our Advisors for joining in the effort.”

Jennifer Gross commented, “We are thrilled to launch this unique and ambitious initiative at a time when there are fewer and fewer resources available to afford scholars the time and access needed for primary document research. It is a great privilege to care for and process archival materials. Even as the art world has become interested in these resources, it is critical to support public conversation about best stewardship and most effective and appropriate practices and partnerships. Technology should be enabling the sharing of intellectual and visual resources, but the speed at which the art world is operating now can preclude adequate attention to this work. We aim to broaden the art historical conversation to reflect the diversity of aesthetic and cultural values at hand today.”

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