New York-based Steven Holl Architects and the developers Compagnie de Phalsbourg want to build the first Musée des Collectionneurs in Angers, at the edge of the Loire Valley. The space will be used to making private collections accessible: “It’s an answer to collectors who cannot build their own museum, but want to share what they have with the public.”
The scheme is not the first which offers a less pricey alternative to a private museum: the collector Robbie Antonio announced last year plans to produce prefabricated, modular museums designed by starchitects.
Jean-Jacques Aillagon is a consultant on the Angers project. He advises the billionaire collector François Pinault and famously brought Takashi Murakami to Versailles when he was in charge of the palace outside Paris.
The designers think the innovative concept is the first of its kind. The exact details aren’t known for the moment, but what we do know is that there will be no more than four collector shows a year. What Compagnie de Phalsbourg hopes is to deploy the concept internationally and forge a worldwide network of collectors’ museums.
A boutique hotel is included alongside the new museum. A call for cutting-edge designs was first launched last year as part of the “Imagine Angers” initiative. It was a public appeal for submissions geared towards transforming the city on the western edge of the Loire Valley into a cultural hub.
The competition puts in light that proposals should work with the city’s architectural quirks and offer environmental sustainability. It generated 48 proposals for several emblematic sites. The museum and hotel will be situated on the river Maine opposite Angers castle.
The jury was impressed by the holl design of a geo-thermally powered museum. The design for the more than 5,000-square-foot museum was inspired by the Chateau d’Angers. This was built by King Louis IX in the 13th century on the foundation of an older fortress from the ninth century.
The museum neighbors the city’s biggest theater, Le Quai. It will include gallery space for permanent and temporary exhibitions, an atrium for events and education facilities.