Dean Valentine, the trend-setting Los Angeles collector known for pursuing emerging artists, is opening an exhibition space named Bowmont Art to showcase his holdings. The first show includes works by Nathan Hylden, Alex Hubbard and Dianna Molzan. “There are parts of my collection I’ve never seen,” Valentine said in a phone interview with A.i.A., explaining that a significant portion of his artworks remain in storage. He has been acquiring since 1995 and describes his collection as “too big.”
Valentine has leased 7,000 square feet in West Hollywood’s Pacific Design Center where he will mount shows drawn—for now—from his collection and rotating four or five times a year. “I hope that it becomes a creative node,” said Valentine. “A place where, other than the art schools, creativity happens.” None of the work on display will be for sale. The space opens on Friday. (Appointments available at 310-903-4959).
Valentine is a patron of L.A.’s progressive Hammer Museum, where he has served on the board of overseers since 2007. That same year he and his wife, Amy Adelson, donated 50 sculptures by 29 Los Angeles artists. The works, dating from 1995 to 2009, include examples by Liz Craft, Jason Meadows and Evan Holloway.
Valentine has also turned his attention to 1970s conceptual work by artists including Hanne Darboven, Doug Huebler and William Leavitt.
While Valentine says he will remain committed to the Hammer, he points out that a private exhibition space offers more flexibility than a museum. “We don’t have to feel we are speaking to art history. We just have to talk to the moment,” he said.
He plans to host performances, seminars and artist residencies in connection with the exhibition space. “My hope is that it will become a center of conversation about contemporary art,” he said. Eventually he plans to bring in guest curators and borrow works from other collections. “The space is going to promote art on a broader level.”
Valentine was president and CEO of the United Paramount Network (UPN) from 1997to 2001. Previously he served as president of Walt Disney Television. He is now involved with Internet-related investments.