We were lucky enough to be given a tour of Deutsche Bank London’s impressive collection last week and were joined by a small group of our VIP Art Club members. I can safely say that we were completely overwhelmed at the volume and scope of the art that adorns their walls. Deutsche Bank has been associated with collecting contemporary art since 1979 and have established a vast collection of artists you will have heard of, and some they’re sure you’ll hear about in the near future!
When we entered their London offices from London Wall we couldn’t help but see Keith Tyson’s huge 12 Harmonics series that hangs down the entire length of the lobby. Commissioned for the space, Tyson’s polyptych panels are impressive for reasons beyond their scale. Each of the 12 panels painted on aluminium show one of the 12 signs of the Zodiac that are either immediately obvious or entice the viewer to work out which star sign is connected to which panel. However Tyson doesn’t stop at the signs of the Zodiac, or the first twelve elements of the Period Table… or even cleverly including numerical clues from 1 to 12. If you were not impressed by the three ways Tyson includes three different ways of linking the polyptych, he finally links the series with groups of three for each of the seasons and then splits the polyptch panels in half to have 6 day and 6 night panels.
After managing to pull us away from Tyson’s incredible work we were shown up to the eighth floor where the meeting rooms are named after – and contain – a contemporary artist. Corridor upon corridor is lined with works by familiar artists with the names on the doors giving clues as to what might await you inside. We were winding our way around the labyrinth of the eighth floor when one by one we disappeared off into the meeting rooms to discover works by artists we all loved. As both a fan of architecture and art I must admit I loved the views from their offices onto the nigh-time City skyline.
The remit of the collection is that it consists (with the odd exception) of works on paper. This is for two reasons, firstly it means that often the works are by well-known artists made more affordable by purchasing their traditionally less desirable works on paper and secondly that in an office block there is an abundance of space on the walls to hang the art!
The London collection of the Deutsche Bank is impressive on its own, but it is not an isolated example of the Deutsche Bank’s commitment to encourage artists and the wider art scene. The Deutsche Bank Towers in Frankfurt, Germany, is a similar enterprise on an even greater scale with floors organised into groups by geographic region and then by individual artist. Maybe a trip to Frankfurt might be on the horizon!
If you want to learn more about this incredible collection, the Deutsche Bank London has created an Art App for iPhones and iPads which can be downloaded, for free, here.
To take advantage of our VIP Art Club offering. Please sign up here