Currently containing almost 1,000 works, the Frac Auvergne collection is clearly acknowledged at national level for its distinctive pictorial identity and the specific nature of its approach, as evidenced by major acquisitions over the past few years, including David Claerbout, Ed Paschke, Miryam Haddad, David Lynch, Ron Gorchov, Frank Stella, Caroline Achaintre, Clément Cogitore, Agnès Geoffray and Gregory Crewdson.
The Frac Auvergne organises four on-site exhibitions annually, as well as twenty exhibitions across the region, both in schools and in the context of lasting partnerships with institutions such as the Musée Crozatier in Le Puy-en-Velay, La Halle aux Bleds in St-Flour and the Musée d’Art et d’Archéologie in Aurillac. In 2019, the various projects undertaken by the Frac Auvergne attracted 138,000 visitors – including nearly 25,000 from educational establishments from kindergarten through to university level – who enjoy the guided tours, hands-on art workshops and introductory presentations on contemporary art organised each year.
In order to make its exhibitions accessible to the widest audience, the Frac Auvergne has opted for a policy of free admission (exhibition entry, guided tours) and for the sale of its exhibition catalogues at cost price. This is made possible through the support of its partner institutions and of a club of benefactors comprising some fifteen local companies, including the Michelin Corporate Foundation and the Théa Group, two major patrons of the Frac Auvergne.
Ever since its inception in 1985, the Frac Auvergne has adopted a clearly-defined artistic approach focused on painting. From 2004 onwards, I have sought to broaden this approach in two main directions. The first involves the question of art’s relationship to history; the second concerns issues pertaining to the status of the image and, in particular, the links that exist between the history of painting and those of photography and cinema.
The history of the Frac Auvergne has been marked by encounters with many different artists who have helped to shape a very rigorous agenda – including Luc Tuymans (2003), Shirley Jaffe (2008), Katarina Grosse (2007–08), David Lynch (2012), Gregory Crewdson (2017), Marc Bauer (2014), David Claerbout (2015) and Agnès Geoffray (2020) – as well as by the presence of an ever-increasing number of regular visitors.
Our forthcoming move in 2022 to La Halle aux Blés, an iconic building of the city of Clermont-Ferrand, will mark a new phase in our history. This 2,800 sq. m building, with its spacious exhibition rooms, two large educational workshops, on-site storage facilities, as well as a café-restaurant, will allow us to offer an increasingly rich cultural experience.
Jean-Charles Vergne has been director of the Frac Auvergne since 1996, responsible for the Frac Auvergne collection and cultural agenda. He is a member of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA). As exhibition curator and author, he has – to name but a few – organised monographic exhibitions and published books on Luc Tuymans, Albert Oehlen, Richard Tuttle, Raoul de Keyser, David Lynch, Katharina Grosse, Agnès Geoffray, Denis Laget, David Claerbout, Gregory Crewdson, Shirley Jaffe, Mireille Blanc, Marina Rheingantz, Miryam Haddad… He was a member of the acquisitions commission of the CNAP (Centre National des Arts Plastiques, a public institution attached to the French Ministry of Culture) from 2008 to 2011. In 2018, he was the official rapporteur for Clément Cogitore who was awarded the Marcel Duchamp Prize for contemporary art.
6 rue du Terrail
63 000 Clermont-Ferrand, France
T + 33 (0)4 73 90 50 00