Brought to you by: Monaco Life
“Hermès crocodile handbags need their own passports to travel,” says Gréther.
As I pincer salmon sushi into my mouth at Capocaccia, at Impasse de la Fontaine, Gréther recounts a recent Artcurial Monaco auction sale. I cannot decide whether to be more shocked that a handbag required its own passport (as crocodiles are an endangered species) or that this particular fulgent-pink crocodile Hermès handbag encrusted with pink diamonds sold for over 100,000 euros.
With her statuesque figure and blonde hair neatly coiled into a chignon, Gréther fits seamlessly into the world of priceless artefacts. There’s a hint of James Bond girl about this convent-school girl who spent seven years as a director in the world of business intelligence and ended up marrying into one of Monaco’s most established dynasties. The mysterious Gréther is a formidable networker – indeed I met her through a mutual friend in one of Monaco’s hallowed circles.
“Artcurial is a lean and mean organisation,” says Gréther.
Artcurial has risen from new-kid-on-the-auctioneering-block to a 150-strong team in less than a decade…
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The school year has begun for the elite Princess Grace Academy, where young ballet dancers from around the world come to train to become the stars of tomorrow.
Monaco’s ambassadors, guests and Prince Albert have come together for a brilliant summer party organised by the Monaco Ambassadors Club.
The 2021-22 season of the Princess Grace Theatre has been revealed, with 30 events ranging from reinterpretations of the classics to more modern creations to spark the imagination.
Artcurial Monaco Director Louise Gréther steered the auction house through its largest summer auction on record, with everything from Hermès bags to Porsches going under the hammer.
As part of Nouveau Musée National de Monaco’s (NMNM) collection, the permanent installation of Jean-Pascal Flavien’s folding house (to be continued) is a “work to live in”, somewhere between architecture and sculpture, in which artists will reside in the space for up to two weeks at a time.
This blue house in the museum’s garden is the sixth house in an ongoing project and Jean-Pascal, who was born in Le Mans but currently lives in Berlin, was invited by the museum. He told Monaco Life, “The museum is making a strong and positive effort, with a risk-taking program. They are doing this well and it’s noticeable to outsiders.”
Talking about the importance of what can be experimented in the field of art, he said, “The house is a format in itself. It’s different from an institution or gallery. You are creating space, and the conditions of visibility of the object, so you’re seeing furniture and a house but these can be art objects. There’s something organic about this. But it’s not about the house today, it’s about the house in ten years from now and what it will mean.”
Over at 2 avenue Grande-Bretagne, the former head office of UBS, Mike Nelson’s offsite project Cloak, is now open to the public Wednesdays, Thursday and Fridays from 2pm to 6 pm, and by appointment (reservation only for groups up to 10/15 people).
A Turner Prize Nominee, Mike spent the last month using 3000 litres of paint to cover the seven floors and 867sqm of what was UBS’s home from 1956-2016.
“It’s a simple idea to transform everything into blue but it got complicated,” Mike told Monaco Life, commenting that banks are a necessity in the economic structure of how we live, but that there are problematics associated with them and what they symbolise. “The formative idea was to create a work to question these ideals, the relationship between art and money, which Monaco is very indicative of in a sense.”
The use of the utlra-marine pigment, and its subsequent relation to artistic, economic and political histories intertwining, seemed pertinent to Mike’s project. “You are left in a immersive sensation that feels like you are underwater. The result is satisfying, it does what I set out for it to do, a sense of suspended time or shift in perception of reality. It’s strong in relation to that and which is reflected in Monaco as a place.”
For many years, UBS has been dedicated to supporting artistic and cultural endeavours worldwide, “Contemporary art is part of our DNA,” said Geoffrey Chatelard, UBS Marketing. “We have established a credibility in expertise, whether to build or transform a client’s contemporary art collection.”