German software tycoon and art collector Hasso Plattner is opening a new private museum in the German city of Potsdam, neighboring Berlin. The site of the new project is a 45-year-old restaurant that the collector salvaged from demolition years ago.
A well-known collector, Plattner made headlines for the purchase of a record $110.7 million painting of Claude Monet’s Haystack, titled grinding wheels (1890). In 2017, he founded the Barberini Museum, another museum in Potsdam, dedicated to the tech mogul’s collections of modern and impressionist art, as well as artists active in the former German Democratic Republic (GDR).
In 2019, following public calls for the preservation of the site, Plattner purchased the historic building that will house the new art center through his namesake foundation. The new space, called Das Minsk, will focus on East German artists who were active after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Erected in the 1970s, the modernist-style building once housed a famous upscale restaurant of the same name, created by Belarusian artists seeking to forge ties between the GDR and the Soviet Union.
Construction on the project, which houses two main floors with exhibition galleries and an outdoor terrace, began in early January 2020. Scheduled to open later this month, the museum’s programming will be led by Paola Malavassi, now founding director. in 2020 after four years at the head of the Julia Stoschek Collection in Berlin.
The program for the inaugural exhibition, which opens September 24 and runs through January 15, 2023, will feature the late East German painter Wolfgang Mattheuer and Canadian photographer and filmmaker Stan Douglas. Both artists produced works related to Potsdam in the years following the Berlin Wall.