Property of the Centre Region since 2007, the Domain of Chaumont-sur-Loire, already well known for its International Garden Festival, is opening its doors to contemporary art in 2008. In its Château and Park alike, the new Public Establishment welcomes a selection of internationally known artists set to infuse fresh energy into this historic building and its centuries-old Park located in the heart of the Loire Valley UNESCO World Heritage site.
First of all, Jannis Kounellis, a leading light in the Arte Povera movement, is inaugurating an original work set to be on exhibition at Chaumont-sur-Loire for three years, the result of a special commission from the Centre Region. Jannis Kounellis’ work is on display in the Château, in areas newly opened to visitors, creating fresh dialogue with the site’s history and architecture.
Three commissions were also placed with Érik Samakh, Rainer Gross and Victoria Klotz, for operations and installations in the Park, as the theme of “Art and Nature” is central to the Domain’s programming. With his Flûtes Solaires (Solar Flutes) hanging in the Park’s towering trees, and his Lucioles (Fireflies), which bring a magical touch of poetry to Chaumont nights, Érik Samakh has lent the Park further charm and provided visitors with further surprises. Rainer Gross has used it as a venue for one of the ephemeral works the secret of whose creation only he knows, sculpted into the wood at the foot of a great cedar tree and perched subtly in the high branches of old lindens. Meanwhile, Victoria Klotz immerses us in her dreams inspired by the whimsical Princess de Broglie, the Château’s last owner, and her overriding passion for dogs and elephants...
In parallel, the Domain of Chaumont-sur-Loire has opened three new areas devoted to photography and is also hosting the works of major artists specialising in “landscape”, including Andreas Gursky, Alex MacLean, Jean Rault and Michel Séméniako.