Paris Pinacotheque museum closes as visitor numbers drop post attacks

Sat Feb 13, 2016 12:55pm EST
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By Geert De Clercq

PARIS (Reuters) - The Paris Pinacotheque, one of France's rare privately owned art museums, will close on Monday as visitor numbers have plunged following the November shootings in Paris.

The Pinacotheque, which has been under court receivership for three months, said that like all Paris museums it had suffered a dramatic drop in attendance.

Opened in 2007, the Pinacotheque's two exhibition spaces on the Place de la Madeleine in central Paris mainly ran temporary exhibits with works loaned from other museums or private collections and had a testy relationship with the public French museum world.

"The disastrous economic climate due to a large extent to the Nov. 13 attacks forces us to close the Madeleine sites in Paris," the museum said in a statement.

Last year's show on Gustav Klimt and the Vienna Secession attracted nearly 400,000 visitors, according to the museum.

Following the November attacks in which Islamist militants killed 130 people and the January 2015 attacks on the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine and a Jewish deli in which 17 people were killed, the Paris tourist industry has suffered.

Preliminary official data released late January showed museum attendance in the Paris region had dropped 5 percent last year. The Louvre, the world's most visited museum, saw visitor numbers drop to 8.7 million from 9.3 million in 2014.

The Pinacotheque will close on Monday evening, prematurely ending an exhibition of photographs by fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld which was set to run until the end of March.   Continued...