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The Château de Montsoreau-Museum of contemporary art has the world’s largest collection of works by the Art & Language movement. It is located in the Loire Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in Maine-et-Loire in the commune of Montsoreau between Angers and Tours.
Art & Language
Art & Language is a pioneering movement in Conceptual Art. The name was adopted in parallel with the creation of the journal Art-Language, created in 1968; this journal had a profound influence on contemporary art. As early as the 1960s, Art & Language imagined a separation between the art object and the work of art. He has included in his ranks: Michael Baldwin, Mel Ramsden, Charles Harrison, Joseph Kosuth, Terry Atkinson, Harold Hurrell, David Bainbridge, Andrew Menard, Michael Corris, Ian Burn, Philip Pilkington, Kathryn Bigelow, David Rushton, Mayo Thompson, Sarah Charlesworth, Christine Koslov, Paula Ramsden, Preston Heller, Lynn Lemaster, Graham Howard, Sandra Harrison, Nigel Powell, Terry Smith, Nigel Lendon. In 1986, Art & Language was nominated for the Turner Prize.
The architecture of Château de Montsoreau is also a pioneer of the renaissance in France, the only castle in the Loire Valley to have been built on the river bed. It is also one of the very first examples of pleasure architecture in the Loire Valley. Built in 1450 by one of the richest men in the kingdom, John II of Chambes, first adviser to the Kings of France Charles VII and Louis XI, ambassador to Venice and partner of Jacques Coeur. Its exceptional and avant-garde architecture is explained as much by his travels as by his fortune.
Museum of contemporary art and Château of the Loire Valley
The opening to the public of the Château de Montsoreau-Museum of contemporary art was made possible by the collaboration between the collector Philippe Méaille and the department of Maine-et-Loire. This took place in April 2016. This choice has its origin both in the exceptional Renaissance architecture of the Château de Montsoreau and in its location. Built on a rocky outcrop located in the course of the Loire, it gives it the particularity of being the only chateau of theLoire Valley to have been built on the river bed; at the very place where the Vienne flows into the Loire and becomes the widest river in France. Its location in the heart of the Loire Valley makes it a wonderful place for tourism. The region has a strong identity and a very diverse international audience.
It is part of the network of museums of modern and contemporary art in France such as: The Musée National d’Art Moderne, the Musée d’Art Moderne de la ville de Paris, the Louis Vuitton Foundation, the CAPC Bordeaux, the Magasin Grenoble, the CCCOD Tours, the Musée de Saint-Etienne.