Friday, 29 July 2016

Billionaire-funded museum will open at Peter Marino-designed Chelsea condo

An investment banker will create a gallery in The Getty (not to be confused with the L.A. museum) from his private art collection

The amenities offered within luxury condos nowadays run the gamut from run-of-the-mill (fitness studios, residents’ lounges) to the ridiculously over-the-top (private jet service, private restaurant helmed by a Michelin-starred chef). But a perk coming to The Getty, the High Line-hugging condo by Victor Group and Michael Shvo (not to be confused with the Los Angeles museum of the same name), is a new one: The condo will be home to a museum featuring pieces from the private art collection of J. Tomilson Hill, a vice chairman of I-banking firm the Blackstone Group.

According to a profile in the Times, Hill is pals with Peter Marino, the leather-loving architect working on the Getty; Marino has designed seven (!) homes for Hill and his wife, so the pairing is, apparently, natural. The Hills have an art collection valued around $800 million that spans a multitude of genres and eras, and includes works by Francis Bacon, Mark Rothko, Cy Twombly, Pablo Picasso, and more. (It probably won’t be a surprise that Hill’s total net worth is estimated to be more than $1 billion, thanks in part to that collection.)

But the museum within The Getty isn’t intended to simply be a vanity project: The Times piece notes that there’ll be a full-time curator on board to helm exhibits, though the couple—who will be working with the project through their Hill Art Foundation—will almost certainly have input on what’s shown there. From the piece:

In his new space — which will have a full-time curator and security staff — Mr. Hill is particularly interested in the juxtaposition of different artists and eras, just as the Frick show paired his bronzes with his postwar art.

Mr. Hill also wants to explore artists in relationship to one another — how Bacon claimed Rembrandt was an inspiration, for example, "but never acknowledged he was influenced by Rubens," he said. (Mr. Hill owns five Rubens.)

The museum, which will span 6,400-square-feet, is expected to open in the fall of 2017—and even though it’s within a very fancy building, it’ll be free and open to the public. You can’t say that about most condo amenities.

A Billionaire Is Opening a Private Art Museum in Manhattan [NYT]


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