The creation of a “Museums and Cultural Heritage” department within the Institut français des Etats-Unis – Villa Albertine and FACE Foundation, will make it possible to better respond to the many requests and needs for support of French museums and Heritage institutions in their American challenges and projects. The growing importance of these subjects within Villa Albertine is intended to concern the different component of its activity: individual residencies, professional programs, events, production of original content and community animation.
Although museums are a European invention, the United States has profoundly reshaped this museum tradition, to the point that French and European museums have long been inspired by their American counterparts. This transatlantic museum matrix, which has been nourished by multiple iterations, must be reactivated today as the museum institution is challenged to reinvent itself to adapt to unprecedented societal and technological changes.
In this perspective, the creation of a dedicated “Museums and Cultural Heritage” program within FACE Foundation should allow to accompany and support the implementation and the realization of a wide range of actions, and most particularly:
Since its launch in November 2020, Villa Albertine welcome each year museum professionals among its residents.
In 2022, Villa Albertine prioritized residences for museum directors and hosted Annabelle Ténèze (Les Abattoirs, Musée – Frac Occitanie Toulouse), Olivia Voisin (Museums of Orléans) and Olivier Gabet (Musée des Arts décoratifs, Paris).
In 2023, Villa Albertine will host Mathieu Deldicque (director of the Musée Condé, Chantilly), Anna Hiddleston-Galloni (curator at the Centre Pompidou) and Malick Ndiaye (director of the Museum of African Art, Dakar).
From 2024 onwards, Villa Albertine will prioritize the welcoming continue of other museum and cultural heritage professionals like art historians, archaeologists, curators, conservators, museum educators etc.
In order to identify and train the next generation of French museums leaders, Villa Albertine is launching a new initiative in 2023: the French Museums Next Generation program, to invite 8 young curators from French museums each year for a two-week immersion in the US museum ecosystem, aimed at enriching their reflection and developing their network through contacts with the American museum community.
This program, which aims to participate in the renewal of the Franco-American dialogue on the challenges facing museum institutions, has the following objectives: to provide French professionals with a better knowledge and understanding of the American museum ecosystem in all its dimensions; to inspire them in their own practices and to confront them with the practices of their American counterparts; to strengthen the international dimension of the young generation of French curators and their network on the other side of the Atlantic; and to promote the new generation of French curators and future directors of French museums in the American professional milieu.
For its first edition, the French Museums Next Generation program will be held in Los Angeles (March 2023) and New York (May 2023).
The first edition of the Museum Series was organized in 2022 to encourage Franco-American dialogue on the future of museums, with invitations extended to the newly appointed/renewed presidents-directors of leading French institutions (Christophe Leribault, musée d’Orsay; Laurent Le Bon, Centre Pompidou; Laurence des Cars, musée du Louvre; and Hervé Lemoine, Mobilier National).
In 2023, Villa Albertine will continue and expand the Museum Series by inviting 10 French museum directors, representing a new generation of cultural leaders in France, to come and dialogue with 10 American museum directors, an opportunity to present their institution and develop their institutional network and potential patrons in the US. This series consists of events, each structured around a discussion between a French and an American director, brought together on the basis of similarities between their respective institutions or common projects. The discussions will be held in public at the Villa Albertine headquarters in New York (or possibly at another Villa Albertine location) and will also be broadcast and recorded to amplify their reach. To ensure that the reflections that emerge from this series are shared beyond the Museum Series, all of these Franco-American dialogues will be transcribed, translated, edited and compiled in a dedicated publication.
In connection with the major renovation work begun in 2018 on the historic Payne Whitney Mansion where the IFEU-VA is installed, the Museums and Cultural Heritage program will also support actions of valorization, enhancement, and promotion of the exceptional historic heritage of the Villa Albertine headquarters in New York. These actions can be projects to restore the building’s historic décor, commissions to French artists and designers to create permanent works in the building, publications on the history of the building or exhibition projects promoting French art and design.
Program Officer, Museums and Cultural Heritage Attaché