Martell, France’s Newest Art Foundation, Previews in Cognac

A snowy site-specific installation by Vincent Lamouroux has inaugurated the program.

Vincent Lamouroux, Par nature( 2016), installation view at Fondation d’entreprise Martell. Photo ©DR, courtesy Fondation d’entreprise Martell.
Vincent Lamouroux, Par nature( 2016), installation view at Fondation d’entreprise Martell. Photo ©DR, courtesy Fondation d’entreprise Martell.

The cognac brand Martell has previewed its new art foundation, sited in the modernist Gâtebourse building that once functioned as a bottling factory in the town of Cognac, southwestern France, with a site specific work by artist Vincent Lamouroux.

The art foundation project, which follows in the footsteps of European super-brands like Louis Vuitton and Prada, is due for completion by 2021.

“[By] creating a corporate foundation in the heart of its territory, Martell wants to embrace its local roots and a new challenge: to carry forward culture, the arts and knowledge while sharing our values of excellence, generosity and friendliness with a large audience, in France and abroad,” César Giron, CEO of Martell Mumm Perrier-Jouet, said in a statement.

Vincent Lamouroux,<i> Par Nature </i>(2016), installation view at Fondation d’entreprise Martell. Photo courtesy Fondation d’entreprise Martell ©DR.

Vincent Lamouroux, Par Nature (2016), installation view at Fondation d’entreprise Martell. Photo courtesy Fondation d’entreprise Martell ©DR.

Lamouroux’s spectacular work Par Nature (2016) is a landscape comprising of all the materials used to make a Martell Cognac bottle, thus tapping into the history of the building and the brand. The work is covered in white lime, which gives the impression of a snowy landscape.

This installation by Lamouroux and renovated exterior are the first in a four stage program, which will see the former bottling factory transformed into 6,000 square meter art center, designed by French architects Brochet-Lajus-Pueyo.

Martell Foundation. Photo courtesy Foundation d'enterprise Martell

Martell Foundation. Photo courtesy Foundation d’enterprise Martell.

After the Lamouroux exhibition closes in January 2017, an extensive renovation of the Gâtebourse building will commence, starting with the interior, the ground floor, and rooftop terrace, and a first reopening scheduled for spring 2018. The rest of the building will then be repaired gradually, with a completion date slated for 2020-21.

The foundation is aiming to set itself up as a “space of discovery and experimentation” and a tourist destination, able to draw international artists and designers into a dialogue with the historical brand through a progressive and innovative program.


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