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A Better “Use” Of Bank Money

August 23, 2009
And Now, an Exhibition From Our Sponsor

Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

A painting by Gerhard Richter is in the lobby of Deutsche Bank’s New York headquarters.

 

By ROBIN POGREBIN

 

PEOPLE admiring Thomas Moran’s tranquil “View of Fairmont Waterworks, Philadelphia” (from about 1860) or Childe Hassam’s bucolic “Old House and Garden, East Hampton” (1917) in the show on American Impressionism at the Millennium Gate Museum in Atlanta this summer might be surprised to learn the identity of the curator: Bank of America.


Since the 1960s, when Chase Manhattan Bank assembled one of the first major corporate art collections under the guidance of its president, David Rockefeller, banks and other large companies have been acquiring fine art as a way to give their offices a cultured, dignified aura. Over time many companies have expanded these collections — with in-house curators to oversee them — and lent works to museums and other exhibition spaces, mostly for marketing reasons.

 

But a few corporations, including JPMorgan Chase,Deutsche Bank and UBS, have occasionally gone a step further, lending out complete shows. And Bank of America has lately gone further still, creating a roster of ready-made shows that it provides to museums at a nominal cost to them— essentially turnkey exhibitions.

 

Read more at: And Now, an Exhibition From Our Sponsor

 

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