press release

Being Modern: MoMA in Paris
11.10.2017 - 05.03.2018

Fondation Louis Vuitton presents, in its Frank Gehry-designed building, an exceptional exhibition devoted to the unrivaled collection of the Museum of Modern Art. Featuring more than 200 renowned masterpieces and less familiar, but highly significant works. This exhibition highlights the pivotal role that MoMA, its curators and its exhibition program have played in the history of art in the 20th and 21st Centuries. Now engaged in a significant expansion and renovation of its building, MoMA has chosen Fondation Louis Vuitton as its partner to bring its legendary artistic heritage to Paris, showcasing its mission to be perpetually modern.

Organised by Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the exhibition Being Modern: MoMA in Paris draws together a superb and far-reaching representation of the highly important artworks that MoMA has acquired since its founding in 1929. Presented from October 11, 2017 to March 5, 2018, the exhibition includes masterworks ranging from the birth of modern art through trends and styles such as American abstraction, Pop art and Minimalism to the most contemporary art. A multidisciplinary selection of 200 works will occupy the whole of the Fondation’s building. The works are drawn from all six of the MoMA’s curatorial departments, reflecting the history of the institution and the choices it had made in building its collecting

The exhibition responds to two objectives: to show a significant body of MoMA’s great collection in Paris, and to evoke the more fluid and interdisciplinary installations that visitors to MoMA will encounter following the completion of the expansion and renovation project. Among the 200 works presented at Fondation Louis Vuitton are masterpieces by Paul Cézanne, Gustav Klimt, Paul Signac, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Giorgio de Chirico, Edward Hopper, Max Beckmann, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Marcel Duchamp, Francis Picabia, Alexander Calder, René Magritte, Walker Evans, Yayoi Kusama, Willem de Kooning, Jasper Johns, Yvonne Rainer and Frank Stella. The selection will alternate between acknowledged masterpieces and less familiar but nevertheless highly significant artworks. A selection of rarely shown materials from MoMA’s archives, retracing the history of the Museum, will also be incorporated into the galleries.

Some of the works are being shown in France for the first time: Constantin Brancusi’s bronze Bird in Space (1928); Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans (1962); Philip Guston’s Tomb (1978); (Untitled) “USA Today” by Félix Gonzalez-Torres (1990); 144 Lead Square by Carl Andre (1969); Untitled by Christopher Wool (1990); Untitled (You Invest in the Divinity of the Masterpiece) by Barbara Kruger (1982); and Patchwork Quilt by Romare Bearden (1970).

Being Modern: MoMA in Paris is co-organised by the Museum of Modern Art in New York and Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris, under the direction of Glenn Lowry (Director, Museum of Modern Art) and Suzanne Pagé (Artistic Director, Fondation Louis Vuitton). The Curator of the exhibition is Quentin Bajac (The Joel and Anne Ehrenkranz Chief Curator of Photography, MoMA), assisted by Katerina Stathopoulou (Assistant Curator, MoMA) in association with Olivier Michelon (Curator, Fondation Louis Vuitton) for the installation of the exhibition in Paris. The section pertaining to the archives is organised by Michelle Elligott (Chief of Archives, Library, and Research Collections, MoMA). The selection of artworks and the structure of the exhibition were defined by Glenn D. Lowry and Quentin Bajac, with the support of the various curatorial departments of the Museum. These departments have worked together during the planning of this exhibition to enable discussions, develop comparative approaches and foster openness towards other geographic and aesthetic horizons or potential identities. The project was undertaken in close collaboration with the artistic department of Fondation Louis Vuitton.

Bernard Arnault, President of Fondation Louis Vuitton, is strongly committed to the exhibition Being Modern: MoMA in Paris being shown in Paris. The project has received continual support from Jean-Paul Claverie, Advisor to Bernard Arnault, and Marie-Josée Kravis, President of the MoMA.