Deutsche Bank has finally christened its new exhibition space in the center of Berlin. Called the PalaisPopulaire and housed in the 18th century Prinzessin Palais (Princess palace) in the city’s historic center, it will present works from the bank’s collection as well as temporary exhibitions. The new arts center, which is due to open during Berlin Art Week on September 27, is three times larger than the bank’s KunstHalle, which was just down the street until it closed in April.
The new PalaisPopulaire will draw on Deutsche Bank’s 50,000-strong corporate collection, which is held throughout the company’s 900 branches in 40 countries. The wider collection includes works by Joseph Beuys and Georg Baselitz, as well as work by Andreas Gursky, as a part of the collection’s other main emphasis, which is on photography.
The first exhibition, “The World on Paper,” will focus on the bank’s extensive collection of paper-based works, featuring Germany’s Katharina Grosse and American artist Ellen Gallagher, as well as Nairobi-born and Brooklyn based Wangechi Mutu.In total, the grand opening of the palace will show around 300 highlights from the bank’s extensive collection of works on paper, which it began building in the 1970s. The show will run until January 9, 2019.
“The Deutsche Bank Collection is now truly public. And we have more space for partnerships with renowned cultural installations,” says Friedhelm Hütte, head of the bank’s worldwide art program and curator of the opening exhibition. In addition to rotating exhibitions and displays from its collection, the PalaisPopulaire’s program will also feature regular concerts, readings, and events focusing on sports topics and other new digital formats.
The new 3,000 square-foot arts center is near the bank’s KunstHalle, which was originally the Deutsche Guggenheim until the bank’s partnership with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation ended in 2013. The PalaisPopulaire and KunstHalle are a stone’s throw from the vast new Humboldt Forum, which is readying to open in late 2019. With its prime location, the new center is well placed to attract local and international visitors.
While Deutsche Bank’s cultural activities are burgeoning, it is cutting jobs and its financial position is less than rosy: The share price of Germany’s largest bank hit a historic low, falling by almost 15 percent since April.