INTERVIEW: Gilles FUCHS, Collector & President of ADIAF


ADIAF_okThe ADIAF (Association pour la Diffusion Internationale de l’Art Français) is one of a kind Association of French Collectors.

If some of its members belong to Boards of Museum or develop their Foundations, the ADIAF itself is independent and builds its programs with partners who share the same mission to enhance the vibrant French Art Scene. The number of collectors/members increased since their debut 21 years ago from 5 (Catherine Millet, Daniel Abadie, Daniel Templon, Gilles Fuchs) up to 350 nowadays.

vernissage + remise prix Marcel Duchamp 2014 - Julien Prévieux - Centre Pompidou - mardi 22 septembre 2015

Its President since 2001, is Gilles Fuchs. He was the Executive vice President of the prestigious Parisian Haute Couture House, Nina Ricci. He, and his wife Marie-Françoise, are both great collectors. Their collection counts great names such as those unveiled on the occasion of the Lyon Biennal in 2011, in Bourg en Bresse titled “L’art comme plaisir au quotidien – Gilles Fuchs, collectionneur“:

Adam Adach, Karel Appel, Ruth Barabash, Jean-Charles Blais, Damien Cabanes, Julien Carreyn, Gaston Chaissac, Mathieu Cherkit, Claude Closky, Tony Cragg, Marcel Dzama, Cedrick Eymenier, Anne Ferrer, Fischli & Weiss, Keith Haring, Noritoshi Hirakawa, Tadashi Kawamata, Alain Kirili, Bertrand Lavier, Jean Le Gac, Isa Melsheimer, Fabien Merelle, Jean-Michel Meurice, Mrzyck & Moriceau, Shirin Neshat, Yazid Oulab, Philippe Perrot, Françoise Petrovitch, Florian & Michael Quistrebert, Markus Raetz, Jean-Pierre Raynaud, David Salle, Daniel Tremblay, Richard Tuttle, Fabien Verschaere, William Wegman


On the occasion of the Marcel Duchamp Prize (read related article) we wanted to interview the President of the ADIAF, Gilles Fuchs, about the Marcel Duchamp Prize and French Contemporary Art:

gillesfuchsHDbe-Art magazine: What are the criteria of the jury to select the four finalists? to select the winner?

Gilles Fuchs : Unlike many awards the Marcel Duchamp prize is organized by art collectors. Our selection committee (annually renewed ) consists of 11 collectors with different sensibilities and with total freedom of mind.

They strive to discover young artists (around 40 years old) of the French scene that match the contemporary spirit and whose practices and trends can be the most diverse: painting, drawing, photos, video, installation, sculpture, performance .. All currents can be represented from expressionism to conceptualism. For each edition, the committee selects four artists and an international jury composed of international collectors and curators designates the winner.

be-Art magazine: Don’t you think that, somehow, the internationalization of Art Market could lead to smoothing the aesthetics of art because it has to be understood and acquired during art fairs by a large group of collectors worldwide?

Gilles Fuchs :

The very purpose of the ADIAF is to advocate the French art – or, in other words the art made in France- That approach is found in the majority of countries that wish to enhance their national art whose expression varies depending on the cultures of each country: German art, Chinese art, British art, American art …. And nowadays we can see everywhere some “magical” expression of art directly inspired by African traditions, Pacific or others, very different from so called Western art. These modes of expression of the eternal and universal themes avoid a total standardization of art.

be-Art magazine: What sort of advice would you give to a new collector?

Gilles Fuchs :

Do not be afraid to purchase an art that, at first, you do not understand . Above all, artists are guides toward the future. Le Corbusier as Picasso have long been treated as “crazy guys”

be-Art magazine: You know better than anyone the French Art, could we say there is a French aesthetic

Gilles Fuchs :

The French aesthetic corresponds to a culture of balance, based on moderation and some sort of intellectualism. It results from a profound sense of humanism coming from the Ancient Greece that tells that the human being is the center and the measure of the world.

be-Art magazine: What do you like so much when collecting art?

Gilles Fuchs :

What I do love is exploring and practicing freedom of expression and tolerance.

be-Art magazine: What is the artist you discovered lately?

Gilles Fuchs :

Let me mention four: Tarik Kiswanson, Mimosa Echard, The Gregory Brothers and Quistrebert Foerstner

be-Art magazine: Which exhibition in Paris would you recommend to our readers?

Gilles Fuchs :

Paris is full of art venues and events. I would say:
The Centre Pompidou for its two exhibition Marcel Duchamp Prize: Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster (winner 2002) and Julien Prévieux (winner 2014)
LAM, Karel Appel and the new exhibition of the collection
The Modern Art Museum of the City of Paris with Warhol
The Grand Palais with Picasso-mania
Luxembourg with Fragonard: French tradition with its joie de vivre and eroticism.
In addition Versailles with Anish Kapoor.

Interview conducted by Beatrice Chassepot, October 21st, 2015