The Westdeutsche Zeitung and the Rheinische Post reported on Monday that a press conference is scheduled this week to officially announce that Susanne Gaensheimer, current director of the Museum für Moderne Kunst (MMK) in Frankfurt, will succeed Marion Ackermann as the new artistic director of the Kunstsammlung NRW (NRW Art Collection) in Düsseldorf. Ackermann was previously appointed the head of the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen (Dresden State Art Collection) in November 2016.
Gaensheimer has been director of the MMK since 2009, when Udo Kittelmann left to become the director of the Nationalgalerie in Berlin. Before that, she directed the collection for contemporary art in the Städtische Galerie at the Lenbachhaus in Munich. Gaensheimer, is known for promoting the US conceptual artist Bruce Nauman and is a recognized contemporary art historian.
In 2011, Gaensheimer curated a Christoph Schlingensief exhibition for the German pavilion at the Venice Biennale, which won the Golden Lion. Schlingensief, an admired and controversial German director and artist, was asked to design the pavilion but passed away before his plans could be realized. His work was finished posthumously by Gaensheimer and Schlingensief's wife, Aino Laberenz.
The Staatliche Kunstsammlungen’s art collection, with more than five thousand works, is considered the cultural flagship of the NRW. The collection focuses on pre-classic modernism, before 1945, and American and European postwar art.
Gaensheimer’s start-date will be determined once the curator of the NRW’s art collection, as well as the NRW’s board of directors, grant their approval for this appointment.