Rhineland Independent


Foundations and collections of modern and contemporary art based on private initiative play a vital role in enriching the diversity of the cultural landscape of public museums, institutions, and artist-run spaces in the Rhineland. Driven by passion and a belief in social responsibility, private initiatives establish self-funded exhibition spaces, initiate art fellowships, make donations and provide loans, act as sponsors, and finance new productions. Alongside the concentrated creation of unique collections of emerging as well as established art, they support artists’ careers and pursue an archival mission. With Rhineland Independent, four of these initiatives - Langen Foundation, KAI 10 I ARTHENA FOUNDATION, Sammlung Philara and Julia Stoschek Collection - will merge for the first time to jointly present their multifaceted programs and conceive new projects. The strength of this cooperation lies above all in the diversity, respective specialisation, and individual agenda of the given players. In the end, the multifarious institutional and thematic focuses mirror the diversity of a dynamic artistic discourse.


What does socially relevant art patronage look like in the 21st century? Internationally and throughout Germany, there is a growing number of privately supported exhibition houses and collections. Based on the four institutions in the Rhineland Independent network (Julia Stoschek Foundation, KAI 10 | Arthena Foundation, Langen Foundation, Philara Collection) and in cooperation with the Master‘s programme in Art Mediation and Cultural Management at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, we will examine the potentials, societal expectations and social responsibilities of private collecting and exhibition practice. The conference combines academic lectures with contributions from international collectors and donors who will discuss their various institutional and funding models. In addition to a review of the historical development of private collecting, the conference will present recent research results on the current significance of private art funding. For example, what influence do transnational collector networks have on art market developments, artist biographies and the programmes of public institutions? Where do private institutions complement public offerings, expand the cultural infrastructure and enable social participation? What opportunities and responsibilities arise from these considerations for the future? The conference will examine these and other questions from different perspectives and explore possibilities for creative cooperation and future-oriented synergies.


#hellofriend | April 2020


The spreading of the coronavirus worldwide has forced the cultural sector into a standstill. While also our gates remain closed, we – jointly as Rhineland Independent – will be asking people closely connected to the art system about the current situation in the cultural realm over the next weeks. How are colleagues elsewhere experiencing the crisis and which cultural future scenarios are conceivable there? The current situation has shown how strongly we are globally connected, and we certainly rely on a sense of solidarity and sharing in the global community when it comes to shaping a positive future. With #hellofriend we invite our international partners to an evaluation of culture in times of corona.

Art Düsseldorf | November 2019


The cooperation will kick off with a presentation of the Guerrilla Girls at Art Düsseldorf. The project comprises a selection of ten large format posters created by the feminist collective between 1985 and 2018. Such posters have played an important role in the group’s appearances in public ever since their founding in 1985. Using a combination of researched facts, provocative images and striking messages, the works address the issue of gender bias, ethnical discrimination and other asymmetries of power in the scope of institutions, art history and the art market. During their actions – targeting among others politics, the film industry and popular culture – the activists wear gorilla masks; none of the artists speak on their own behalf. Based on this anonymity the focus shifts toward the topics of their work: widespread mechanisms of segregation within the art world, contributing until today to an art and cultural landscape dominated by male protagonists.