Italy’s Fondazione Arte CRT Makes Plans to Go Global

The organization will launch a new acquisition program at Arco Madrid and lend more than 25 works to the Bourse de Commerce in Paris.

Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo. Photo: Andrea Basile. Courtesy Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo.

Italy’s Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT has announced a sweeping strategic plan today that aims to increase the international reach of the collection over the next four years, according to the foundation’s president, Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, who was appointed to the role last year.

Since its inception in 2000, the private foundation has been building a community-focused collection of modern and contemporary art to enrich the Piedmont region of Italy. Initially focused on the works of Italian artists like Lucio Fontana and Mario and Marisa Merz, the collection has swelled to 930 works by over 300 artists from around the globe, such as Marina Abramovic, Olafur Eliasson, William Kentridge, and Liam Gillick.

“It’s an international collection, so it should be known and appreciated internationally,” said Sandretto Re Rebaudengo.

She added that the collection has been instrumental to Turin’s museum network, with the foundation supplying loans and acquisitions for the Turin Civic Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art (GAM) and Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art, as well as site-specific works for the OGR Torino. Additionally, the foundation has long organized long-term international loans to museums across Europe and beyond.

Under Sandretto Re Rebaudengo’s leadership, the foundation’s loans and acquisitions will expand exponentially. The overall investment in the foundation has now exceeded €41 million ($44 million) and the acquisitions budget is set to reach €1 million ($1.1 million) this year, up from €515,000 ($558,000) in 2023—a roughly 50 percent increase.

With this expanded budget, the foundation is marking its first international fair presence at Arco Madrid (March 6–10), where it has established a new annual acquisition prize with the fair. Each year, the winning artwork will be displayed alternatively at GAM and Castello di Rivoli.

Mario Merz's igloo with tree installation.

Mario Merz, Igloo con albero (1968-69). Property of Fondazione per l’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT, loaned to Castello di Rivoli Museum of Contemporary Art and GAM.

Guiding principles for acquisitions will be set by the museums as well as a recently created a committee. The appointments include: Art historian and former Stedelijk Museum director Rudi Fuchs; Hans Ulrich Obrist, the artistic co-director of London’s Serpentine Galleries; Susanne Pfeffer, the director of the Frankfurt Museum MMK für Moderne Kunst; Suhanya Raffel, the director of Hong Kong’s M+ Museum; the director of Madrid’s Reina Sofía museum Manuel Segade Lodeiro; and Vicente Todolì, the artistic director of the Milan Pirelli HangarBicocca Foundation.

Additionally, the fair will increase its support of Turin’s major fair, Artissima, which it has been working with for 20 years. Further support will be granted to TAG, the circuit of Turin’s galleries, and the foundation will fund a VIP program at the photography fair The Phair in an effort to attract more collectors to Turin during Exposed, the city’s annual photo festival.

The foundation will also make one of the largest collection loans in its history this year when it lends more than 25 works to a major survey of Arte Povera at the Bourse de Commerce in Paris. Curated by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, the exhibition will open in October, just ahead of Paris+ by Art Basel.

“It’s important to me that the foundation is known as a collection, not just by individual works,” said Sandretto Re Rebaudengo. “This show will be a great opportunity to see so many of our amazing Arte Povera works at once displayed alongside works from other amazing international collections.”

Leveraging the cultural depth of Turin for international artists is also part of Sandretto Re Rebaudengo’s plans for her four-year tenure as president. She and the foundation’s board will pilot a program called Apertowhich translates to “open” in English—that will provide six free professional development programs per year. Each course will have 25 spots open to artists, curators, writers, educators, and researchers from around the world. The development series is inspired by Sandretto Re Rebaudengo’s curatorial theory course that she developed for her own eponymous foundation, which will co-organize the first Aperto event in June.

The Fondazione Arte CRT is also launching a new four-year public art program for the Piedmont region as well as an educational program for local schools.

“The foundation developed and applied a unique model, starting a positive exchange between the private and public sectors,” said Sandretto Re Rebaudengo. “I intend to further pursue this approach, committing to this model and extending it with many new projects, to match the ambitions of the city and the region.”

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