Deutsche Bank, Guggenheim to Close Berlin Exhibition Space

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Deutsche Bank AG (DBK) and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation today announced plans to close the Deutsche Guggenheim contemporary-art exhibition space on Berlin’s Unter den Linden.

Neither Deutsche Bank nor the Guggenheim Foundation gave a reason for the decision in a joint statement sent by e-mail, saying only that their contract expires at the end of 2012. In the past 14 years, the Deutsche Guggenheim has hosted 57 exhibitions and attracted 1.8 million visitors.

Deutsche Bank plans to use the space on Berlin’s central boulevard as a forum “for intensified dialogue between the business and political worlds,” Josef Ackermann, the bank’s chief executive officer, said in the statement.

The bank and the foundation together commissioned artworks from 17 artists that were exhibited in Berlin, New York and Bilbao. They said in the statement that they have “concrete plans to put the relations between the two organizations on a new basis,” though they didn’t elaborate.

Deutsche Bank has one of the world’s largest corporate art collections, with more than 56,000 works. Artists represented in the collection include Gerhard Richter, Georg Baselitz, Sigmar Polke and Andreas Gursky.