Artcurial continues its international development, with a new visibility in Israel since 2015. The firm is delighted to have the collector Philippe Cohen on its staff, in a consultant capacity. Based in Tel Aviv, his role is to regularly organise events and to weave ties with clients and with the numerous cultural institutions in the region. All connected with his areas of predilection, first of which is contemporary art and design. His enthusiasm and knowledge contribute significantly to the firm’s impact in Israel and beyond.
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Well known in the world of contemporary art, Philippe Cohen lives art on a daily basis. Over the years, since the beginning of the nineties, he has gathered a collection of impressive quality, of which we got a glimpse in the spring of 2013 at the Petah Tikva Museum, close to Tel Aviv, and then in Paris in October 2013 when he exhibited selected items in the Passage de Retz during the FIAC and, finally, at the Multimedia Art Museum in Moscow in autumn 2014. His commitment has involved both French artists (Adel Abdessemed, Loris Gréaud, Pierre Huygue, Philippe Parreno) and international artists (Douglas Gordon, Louise Lawler, Paul McCarthy, Cindy Sherman, Danh Vo). He sees his collection as a tool for thought. Bernard Blistène, director of the National Museum of Modern Art, said of him that “he has a mixture of wisdom and reflection. Is that something to do with a passion for study, in the spiritual sense of the word? In any case it gives him a roadmap, a methodology that he applies, or which applies. Philippe expects a lot from art” (Le Journal des Arts, April 2010).
Before coming to contemporary art, Philippe Cohen patiently collected for twenty years a set of drawings by the orientalist Alfred Dehodencq, which have been recently exhibited and donated to the Israel Museum. He has also run various circles of friends of museums and, for the Israel Museum, initiated an acquisitions committee which has resulted in the creation of a window for emerging French art within the institution’s contemporary collection. He has also organised, with support from the French Institute in Tel Aviv, cross-over exchanges between the major French and Israeli institutions in order to further awareness of the respective contemporary scenes in those countries.