Press Room

The Vladimir Potanin Foundation participates in replenishing the collection of the State Hermitage Museum

The Vladimir Potanin Foundation participates in replenishing the collection of the State Hermitage Museum

In the course of the International Hermitage Friendship Days, the museum presented its new acquisitions: the first video installation in the Museum’s collection ‘The Silent Sea’ by Bill Viola, a gift from the foundation, and Anselm Kiefer's painting ‘Aurora’, purchased by the museum at the expense of the Vladimir Potanin Foundation and the Hermitage Development Foundation.

‘Aurora’ was painted by one of the greatest post-war Germany artist and exhibited among others at the exhibition ‘Anselm Kiefer, for Velimir Khlebnikov’, which took place in the ceremonial halls of the Winter Palace in September 2017. ‘Aurora’ was created by the artist specially for St. Petersburg. The video installation of American artist Bill Viola was also shown at the Hermitage Museum in 2014 at the exhibition ‘Bill Viola. The Silent Sea’ and was dedicated to the 250th anniversary of the museum. The latest acquisitions are exhibited in Hall 353 of the General Staff Building. 

Oksana Oracheva, General Director of the Vladimir Potanin Foundation: “Replenishing collections with modern art works is a challenge even for internationally-renowned Russian museums. In recent years, only a handful of significant contemporary artists’ works have been acquired. Therefore, we are pleased to have an opportunity to support the Hermitage in expanding its collection, the same as the Tretyakov Gallery, to which we donated Erik Bulatov’s painting ‘The Picture and Onlookers’. We believe that the modern art masterpieces, including Western art, should become available to general public – not just to connoisseurs. This is one of the ways to participate in the global cultural dialogue. In addition, the very fact of such an acquisition is to a great extent symbolic: for the museum it symbolizes development, and for Art Patrons and Donors it is an opportunity to blend in the emerging trend.’

The partnership between the Foundation and the State Hermitage has continued for almost 20 years. Throughout their cooperation, they have acquired iconic exhibits for the museum’s collection – in 2002, the Foundation purchased Malevich's ‘Black Square’. Vladimir Potanin is the chairperson of the Hermitage Development Foundation – the endowment, which proceeds are used to the implementation of the museum’s strategic development projects. The Foundation supports the museum in its aspiration to preserve the cultural heritage in the context of the 21st century. With the purpose to encourage the most creative museum’s activists, the Vladimir Potanin Foundation carries out programs for museum employees – of individual awards and travel grants for research and internships.