Corporate Art Collections

Authored by: Laura Matzer

Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science, Fourth Edition

Print publication date:  November  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781466552593
eBook ISBN: 9781315116143
Adobe ISBN:


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What propels a for-profit corporation to collect and invest in the collection management of an art collection, to buy original works of art to display, care for, and store? What are the benefits of placing art in the workplace? What does the future hold for corporate art collecting? The term “corporate art collection” has become a generic, catchall phrase that often encompasses the art collecting activities of law and accounting firms, small companies, government, cities, port authority, transit, and other types of organizations. The purpose of this entry, however, is to discuss art collecting activity conducted within corporate business workplaces specifically. Does a corporate art collection reveal a corporation’s viewpoints, long-term goals and aspirations, and culture? And what are the philosophical concerns of mingling art and commerce in the presentation of art in a corporate setting? This entry seeks to address such questions and provide a cursory history of corporate art collecting in the United States and abroad.

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