de Nieuwe opdrachtgevers

les Nouveaux commanditaires

Politicians & sponsors

Patrons and elected representatives have a crucial role in the emergence of art in the democratic age. In a non-market based gift economy, they are the ones who can give the means to develop individual initiatives and make that the driving force of a cultural policy that would be up to the challenges faced by our society.

The New Patrons could never have seen the light of day without the fore-fronting role of a major foundation that paved the way for the involvement of other public and private players.

In 1991, the Fondation de France decided to set in motion the New Patrons Protocol which had been initiated by the artist François Hers. This new mode of intervention appeared to be best adapted to its role as a mediator rather than as a prescriber. The authority that comes with holding financial means for action veers to defining what is the right or wrong course of action in the cultural sector. Indeed one of its primary missions is to redistribute received donations et bequests in order to tackle societal issues which are otherwise seldom or badly tackled. In order to identify needs and bring satisfactory responses, it encourages and supports individual initiatives and liaises with all the players concerned.

In order to function, it therefore relies on a network of European mediators who are strongly embedded in their area and highly competent in all the contemporary art disciplines. It is entirely independently that they seek appropriate responses to the countless questions raised during the implementations on site, with great attention given to the reality of each expressed need. Moreover, as in its other area of activity, it fulfils the necessary conditions for a successful perspectival reversal disrupting established conventions: trust, taking the risk to experiment and to commit in the long term.

A significant number of patrons and of elected representatives can relate to the example of the Fondation de France that proves to what extent the commitment of mediators and independent intermediary bodies is essential to allow everyone to make artworks occur and forge society together.