Named after Mario Merz, the Fondazione was established in 2005 as a centre for Contemporary Art with the intent to host exhibitions, events, education-related activities, and to further research and explore art.
Presided over by Beatrice Merz, the Fondazione makes use of the collaboration of a scientific committee comprising, Vicente Todolí (artistic advisor at Hangar Bicocca, Milano), Frances Morris (Director at Tate Modern, London), Richard Flood (Former Director of Special Projects & Curator at Large of the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York) and Mariano Boggia (Merz’s Collection Manager).
The Foundation alternates shows dedicated to Mario and Marisa Merz, to discover and contemplate their work, with other major site-specific projects by national and international artists, who are invited to interact with the space of the Fondazione and its collections. It also cultivates research, exploring the new generations of artists with regular temporary shows. The Education Department offers a variety of initiatives for different audiences to advance appreciation for contemporary art. The Library is specialized in Modern and Contemporary Art History and Criticism and is complemented by the Merz Archives. The Mario Merz Prize is a biennial prize that aims to recognize talents in the fields of contemporary art and music composition through the expertise of an extensive international network of professionals.
Its activities are self-financed with the support of a network of donors, funding from Regione Piemonte and Compagnia di San Paolo. Some projects are made possible also thanks to the support of Fondazione CRT.