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The Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art Will be Built in Riga with Private Financing

October 30, 2014

Yesterday, on the 30th of October, in a formal ceremony at Pulkveža Brieža iela 28a, The Minister of Culture of the Republic of Latvia Dace Melbārde and the Board Members of the Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art – Ināra and Boriss Teterevs, Ernests Bernis and Oļegs Fiļs signed a memorandum of understanding about the building of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art.

Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art founded by the ABLV Charitable Foundation and the Ināra and Boriss Teterev Foundation undertake to ensure: the construction of the museum, its operation as a museum, its management and development (including the development, maintenance and growth of the collection), by applying their own, as well as other public and private financial resources that they intend to attract, in partnership with the Ministry of Culture, by the 18th of November, 2021. The Museum will be open and accessible to the general public. The founders of the Foundation intend to secure the necessary funding of 30 million euros for the project.

“We have resolved to develop and bring to fruition the idea of a contemporary art museum in Latvia. I am delighted that the Ministry of Culture supports us in this challenging endeavour,” stressed Boriss Teterev.

“Some time ago, when we began a collaboration with the Ministry of Culture, and while we were building the collection, we didn't think it would also come to the creation of the museum itself. Today’s undertaking is a logical continuation of our original intent. Private initiative has enormous significance for the development of a society. Here, on this block bordered by Hanzas iela, Pulkveža Brieža iela and Skanstes iela – a modern new quarter of Riga will develop, and the museum will be at its heart,” explains the Executive Director and Part Owner of ABLV Bank, Ernests Bernis.

“More than a hundred years ago, Augusts Dombrovskis undertook a mission to create a cultural centre in Milgrāvis; today the Ziemeļblāzma Cultural Centre is an indelible part of the arts and cultural life of Riga. Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art seeks to realize an equally valuable mission, deeply cognizant of a national need for a museum of contemporary art of its own, it’s a flagship of any nation’s maturity and prowess with contemporary cultural processes. October is an exciting month for contemporary art not only in Latvia – whilst we are at the very beginning of our journey, the Fondation Louis Vuitton, a new contemporary art space has just opened in Paris. Contemporary art is a living process, it is constantly developing and I am gratified that Latvia is also part of this process,” said the Minister of Culture of the Republic of Latvia Dace Melbārde.

The impetus for the signing of the memorandum of understanding comes from the successful and long term collaboration between The Ministry of Culture, the ABLV Charitable Foundation and the Ināra and Boriss Teterev Foundation as prominent patrons in the field of contemporary art in Latvia, and ABLV Bank as the main supporter of the development of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art's collection, based on the co-operation agreement signed on the 23rd of September 2005.

Development of the Project

Foundation of the Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art will provide for: the preparation of the building site in readiness for construction, the design and building construction competitions by public tender, management of the construction of the museum building, the construction of the necessary infrastructure, the outfitting of the museum, the housing and hanging of the collection, and ensuring the accessibility of the museum to the general public after completion of the construction and the opening of the museum. The Foundation will appoint a number of expert committees to oversee the concept of the museum as well as the procedures necessary for the building construction process. After the hand-over of the completed building and its opening to the public, the Foundation will also care for its operation, management and development, including the up-keep of the collection and its development pursuant to the needs of the museum. The operation of the museum after its hand-over will be organized in accordance with the LR Law on Museums as well as the operation guidelines for the workings of a private accredited museum, ensuring access to the museum for the community and inclusion of the museum’s collection in the National Museums’ shared catalogue.

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