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Marty de Montereau

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Marty de Montereau is a French art collector and a name to remember. Trained at “les Arts Deco”, he turned himself to design and fashion to finally return to contemporary art. First, he created Be My Guest Production, that allowed him to organize exhibitions and other events linked to contemporary art. He is now president of the Student Alumni Association of “les Arts Déco”. Artsper wanted to know more about this collector and his thoughts on contemporary art.

{Artsper}: What is your relationship with art? How did you get into the field?
Marty: I can’t claim much credit, having done art studies. As soon as I started High School, art was included in my program with an advertisement option in my final exams. Driven by my parents, I had started a stamp and a coin collection. Other collections followed, African coins, watches and Hermès scarfs, all linked to my personal and family heritage. My art collection became official in 1992 with the purchase of my first piece, an artwork by Olivier Charpentier (Prodromus – Paris)

{A}: Is there a typical profile of the collector?
M: I don’t think there is a typical profile. There are enthusiasts for sure but everyone has its own approach. It’s also a question of means and personal approach.

{A}: could you describe us an object of your collection that is close to your heart? That you particularly like.
M: My favorite piece is an Andy Warhol picture of Grace Jones whose body is covered with pattern painted by Keith Haring. It takes me back to my early life and my first jobs at the Palace. And the eighties, my “glorious thirty” , where House and Techno were born, discos like les Bains-Douche, Almodovar’s cinema, the arrival of canal + television, Isabelle Adjani in Subway,… a magnificent era tragically interrupted as the lives of its icons Keith Haring, Basquiat, Klaus Nomie, Rock Hudson and Freddy Mercury…

{A}: How do you buy your artpieces today?
M: My different collections don’t have the same sources. I study every trail, gallery, or directly through the artist, auction rooms or on line and even in flea markets.

{A}: What do you think of Artsper’s concept of selling art online?
M: I like the idea, I totally approve it! I love surfing on the internet, I look up a lot of web sites. They are all quite different.

{A}: Do you think internet simplifies collector’s approach for young art enthusiasts?
M: It’s one of the benefits internet has to offer than to access a lot of information. Quite a number of people aren’t at ease in an art gallery. One should nevertheless have a little experience to apprehend the reality of the artwork that is offered.

{A}: What advice would you give a future art collector?
M: The question is a little biased because I think a lot of collectors start a collection without knowing it. It is not something that is premeditated. “What if I started a collection this morning”. Often accumulation generates a collection. Everyone has at home a souvenir brought back from abroad, an object bought in a flea market, an old picture found in a garage sale. It’s when you have a particular interest to these objects and that you associate them to others that a collection is born. It is very personal. How does an object move you? Quality of the making doesn’t always suffice. In each case it must be spontaneous.

{A}: You collect every form of contemporary art. What future is there for French contemporary art?
M: We are very lucky in France because schools, education and exhibition places are numerous. Artistic production is huge.
Everywhere in France, galleries, associations, locations and collectors work to promote French creation and artists. They are found in international art fairs, foreign galleries and around international events. It’s very exciting. Especially when institutions program and expose these artists that are not always French. But develop their art on our territory.

{A}: Your favorite artist at the moment?
M: Two foreign artists, actually, Ivan Argote and Oliver Beer, both in their thirties, whose careers have skyrocketed thanks to the support of French amateurs and their Parisian galleries. Two artists who explore a large palette of techniques to express their sensitivity. Ivan has a transgressive sarcastic vision of a rebellious teenager and offers very controversial artworks very critic of our society. The other, Oliver, uses physics to create body and soul in a world where alchemy reveals his ideas. Two completely opposite universes that I have fallen for.

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