L’hôtel Montcalm in Montpellier

A HOME FOR ART: Vanessa Bruno is to head up a contemporary art project in the city of Montpellier in southern France.

The designer has been named president of MoCo, short for Montpellier Contemporain (Contemporary Montpellier, in English), a new-generation contemporary art institution spread across three of the city’s sites: La Panacée, l’Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Montpellier Méditerranée Métropole, and L’Hôtel Montcalm, a historic hôtel particulier that is undergoing a renovation and will serve as the main building.

Nicolas Bourriaud, one of the cofounders of the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, came on board as artistic director of the institution in January, kicking off with an exhibition staged at La Panacée.

“It’s a project that really speaks to me and I’m also very attached to the region. I’ve been coming here ever since I was a kid, traveling between Arles, Aigues-Mortes and Montpellier,” Bruno said. “It’s a universe that chimes with my creative process as a designer as well as my approach to running a business. Fashion, too, is an extraordinary playground where we get the chance to experiment with various forms of expression like photography, cinema, music, dance and performance.”

Renowned architect Philippe Chiambaretta has been selected to redesign the Hôtel Montcalm site, due for completion in 2019, with a focus on placing artworks within a striking architectural setting.

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