Philipp Lachenmann: DELPHI Rationale


The Ernst Schering Foundation and the Berlin Museum of Prints and Drawings cooperate to build a collection of contemporary art on paper

On October 22, 2008, Klaus-Peter Schuster, general director of the Berlin State Museums, and Heike Catherina Mertens, arts & culture director of the Ernst Schering Foundation, signed a long-term cooperation agreement to build a collection of contemporary artworks on paper, which the Ernst Schering Foundation will buy for the Berlin Museum of Prints and Drawings starting in 2008. The purchases of drawings and prints by international artists or by artists working in or connected to Berlin will be made in close cooperation with the director of the Museum of Prints and Drawings, Professor Dr. Heinrich Schulze Altcappenberg, and the curator of contemporary art at the Museum of Prints and Drawings, Dr. Andreas Schalhorn. The Ernst Schering Foundation will donate the artworks to the Museum of Prints and Drawings on permanent loan.

“With this cooperation, the Foundation pursues its goal of providing long-term support to contemporary artists and making their works accessible to a larger public,“ says Heike Catherina Mertens. “In addition, as a foundation under private law, we take it to be our responsibility to support public museums to increase their holdings of contemporary art. Because of the modest acquisition budgets of the museums and the exploding art market, there is a risk that, without private support, the current international art production in Berlin will not be sufficiently represented in the state collections.“

For Heinrich Schulze Altcappenberg, director of the Museum of Prints and Drawings, the cooperation with the Ernst Schering Foundation “significantly strengthens the holdings of the contemporary art collection at the Museum of Prints and Drawings. Given our extensive collections of prints and drawings from the Middle Ages until today, long-term additions in the field of contemporary art – as are made possible by the partnership with the Ernst Schering Foundation – are an absolute stroke of luck. This is even more the case now that the usual state acquisition funds have become very insecure.“

The Ernst Schering Foundation was established by Schering AG, Berlin, in 2002 and aims to promote the sciences and the arts, especially the life sciences and contemporary art. It pursues these goals by honoring groundbreaking work, e.g. by awarding the prestigious Ernst Schering Prize and the Ernst Schering Art Award. A particular focus is on inter- and multidisciplinary projects, especially at the intersection of science and art. In addition, the Ernst Schering Foundation promotes the scientific and cultural education of children and youth and the dialogue between science and society. The Foundation has an endowment of € 35 million.

The Museum of Prints and Drawings was founded in 1831 as the third institution of (today’s) Berlin State Museums. The basis of the collection was a number of drawings and watercolors acquired by the Great Elector in 1652. Comprising some 550,000 prints and 110,000 drawings as well as a collection of fine book illustrations, the Museum of Prints and Drawings is one of the four largest graphic arts museums in the world. Its holdings of miniatures, watercolors, pastel drawings, oil sketches, drawings and prints cover 1,000 years of European and international art, cultural and media history – from medieval times to the present.

Kunstsammlung der Schering Stiftung


Kunstsammlung der Schering Stiftung


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