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A New Foundation for the Establishment of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art

October 27, 2014

With the objective of establishing a building for the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art, ABLV Charitable Foundation and the Boris and Ināra Teterev Foundation have established a new foundation: Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art.

The foundation’s operating goal is to use its funds to finance the construction of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art in partnership with the Latvian government and Ministry of Culture, and to ensure the operation, management and development of the museum, including the formation, maintenance and development of the contemporary art museum’s collection.

The idea for the establishment of this foundation is a logical continuation of the work invested in the formation of Latvia’s collection of contemporary art. This private initiative is of enormous importance to the development of society. Therefore, the founders of the new foundation hope that this step will provide a powerful developmental impulse to Latvia’s artistic processes, as well as consolidating national identity, the tourism industry and development of art education, as well as facilitating the formation of an integrated cultural space in Riga.

This week, the first important step will be taken towards the achievement of the foundation’s objectives: at a formal ceremony on 30 October 2014 at Pulkveža Brieža Street 28, Riga at which the Ministry of Culture and the Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art will sign a memorandum of intent regarding the establishment and development of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art. The memorandum of intent will be signed by Minister for Culture Dace Melbārde, philanthropists Boris and Ināra Teterev, and the founders of ABLV Charitable Foundation Ernests Bernis and Oļegs Fiļs.

The venue for the signing of the memorandum of intent is of special significance, because the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art will be located on the grounds of the financial transaction and leisure centre New Hanza City (NHC). NHC will be developed on the location of the former Riga Goods Railway Station, in the quarter between Hanzas Street, Pulkveža Brieža Street, Skanstes Street and Sporta Street. NHC will cover an area of 24.5 hectares and will be home to several office buildings, including the headquarters of ABLV Bank, a hotel, conference centre, exclusive apartment district, pre-school education institution, as well as the city garden with a spacious green territory for recreation at the heart of the grounds.

Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art's Board will be comprised of representatives from the founder’s foundations: Boris and Ināra Teterev Foundation Director Mareks Indriksons and ABLV Charitable Foundation Chairman of the Board Zanda Zilgalve. The new foundation’s Chairman of the Board is Romans Surnačovs, who is a board member of both the ABLV Charitable Foundation, and ABLV Bank.

In recent years, demand from both the public and the cultural sector for a contemporary art museum within Latvia’s cultural space has significantly increased. The process has been actively developed by several non-governmental organisations through the creation of special programmes for the organisation of contemporary art exhibitions and creation of new works, as well as through the organisation of various public activities to highlight the idea of the creation of a museum.

The process of the formation of the collection of Latvia’s contemporary art has been ongoing since 2005 when ABLV Bank and the Ministry of Culture concluded a cooperation agreement for an investment of LVL 1 million (EUR 1,422,800) in the formation of a collection of works of art for the contemporary art museum. To date, works of art by 31 artists, totalling 204 works of art, have been purchased for the collection. Artists represented in the collection include: Imants Lancmanis, Aija Zariņa, Andres Tolts, Barbara Gaile, Juris Boiko, Inta Ruka, Miervaldis Polis, Leonards Laganovskis, Kaido Ole, Antanas Sutkus, Vygantas Paukštė, Māra Brašmane, Andris Eglītis, Andrejs Grants, Kristaps Ģelzis, Arnis Balčus, Alnis Stakle, Ieva Iltnere, Paulis Liepa, Evelīna Deičmane, Aigars Bikše, The Blue Noses Group, Jānis Avotiņš, Gints Gabrāns, Ēriks Apaļais, Krišs Salmanis, Jüri Arrak, Katrīna Neiburga, Maija Kurševa, Oleg Kulik and Dmitry Gutov. The works in the collection were on view to the public from 20 September to 27 October 2013 at the Riga Art Space, where ABLV Bank’s collection for the forthcoming Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art was exhibited for the first time in the exhibition “…for an occurrence to become an adventure…”.

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