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La Monnaie de Paris.
La Monnaie de Paris.

Citing Low Visitor Numbers, Monnaie de Paris Cancels Its Contemporary Art Program

La Monnaie de Paris (the Paris Mint) will no longer stage exhibitions of contemporary art. According to the Art Newspaper, officials at the institution have said that an exhibition featuring work by the American artist Kiki Smith—her first solo show in a French institution—which runs until February 9, 2020, will be its last, and an upcoming exhibition of the late Swiss sculptor Jean Tinguely has been canceled.

Camille Morineau, the director of programs at la Monnaie who curated shows by Grayson Perry and Thomas Schüttee, stepped down from her position two weeks ago. In a statement, Marc Schwartz, the director general of the Monnaie, said that the venue still plans on hosting a range of cultural activities. “Through its programming of exhibitions, events, and meetings, [la Monnaie] will be a natural space of sharing, creation, and innovation,” he said. The venue launched its contemporary art program with the temporary exhibition “Paul McCarthy: Chocolate Factory” in 2015 and has since held between three and four exhibitions each year. 

Founded in 864 CE by Charles II—the grandson of Charlemagne, otherwise known as Charles the Great—la Monnaie is France’s longest-standing institution and is the oldest factory in Paris. The mint has had several homes since its inception. Its current building, which was redesigned and rebuilt in the eighteenth century, is located on three acres on the Quai de Conti in Paris’s sixth arrondissement. Artisans began making coins at the site in 1775, and currency is still minted there today.