The Monnaie de Paris—the Paris Mint—is canceling its contemporary art program after only five years of staging exhibitions in the field.
Officials at the venue said on Sunday that its current exhibition on display through February 20—American artist Kiki Smith’s first solo show at a French institution—will be its last. The Art Newspaper reported that a future exhibition of work by the late Swiss sculptor Jean Tinguely scheduled has been cancelled.
According to the paper, the high cost of staging contemporary art exhibitions, combined with low ticket sales, prompted officials at the Monnaie to reevaluate the program’s value. Camille Morineau, the director of programs at the Monnaie, resigned from her post two weeks ago.
La Monnaie de Paris, founded in 864, started its contemporary art programming with much fanfare in 2014 with “Paul McCarthy: Chocolate Factory,” the first major exhibition of McCarthy’s work in France. Intended to signal the Monnaie as new destination for cutting-edge works, it was a provocative choice, and a passerby actually slapped the artist during the installation of his Tree sculpture in the Place Vendôme, apparently offended by the work’s resemblance to a sex toy.
Subsequent artists exhibited in the gallery included Grayson Perry and Thomas Schütte. For Smith, the Monnaie assembled nearly 100 artworks of her artworks, including sculptures, drawings, and paintings.
Marc Schwartz, the director general of the Monnaie, said in a statement that the cancelled programming does indicate a total closure of the venue. “Through its programming of exhibitions, events and meetings, it will be a natural space of sharing, creation and innovation,” he said.