Paradigm shift for cultural policy in France
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to reorganise its cultural activities in France. In the future, its work in Paris will be more closely coordinated with that of the Dutch diplomatic representations in other major cultural centres such as New York, London and Berlin.
Cultural programmes will be put together at the embassy in collaboration with French and Dutch cultural institutions and alternately Dutch and French programmers.
In view of these changes, the Ministry is planning to terminate its grant to the Institut Néerlandais in its present form at the end of the current grant period. The Institut’s high running costs, combined with shrinking budgets for cultural activities abroad, have meant that there are now insufficient resources available for a high-quality cultural programme. So a new paradigm is needed – a more up-to-date and cost-effective model with lower overheads and greater financial scope for cultural programming.
The Ministry wishes to thank Fondation Custodia – its partner and co-founder of the Institut Néerlandais – for their many years of productive collaboration, and for Custodia’s role in promoting Dutch art in France. The fine reputation enjoyed by Dutch heritage there is largely due to the active management of the art collection from the legacy of the late nineteenth-century collector Fritz Lugt.
The three parties behind the Institut Néerlandais (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as sole grant provider, the Fondation Custodia, and the IN foundation as implementer) are to discuss the process by which the various changes will be implemented with all due care. More information is expected this autumn. The IN staff have been informed of the developments.