Hélène Duret takes the helm of La Piscine de Roubaix

Deputy director of the Valenciennes Museum of Fine Arts since 2020, Hélène Duret will take charge of La Piscine – André Diligent Museum of Art and Industry in Roubaix from September 1, 2024. She will then succeed Bruno Gaudichon, who is retiring after thirty-five years at the head of the museum. An inseparable figure from La Piscine, he largely contributed to the cultural renewal of Roubaix by imagining and orchestrating the establishment of the museum in its emblematic location. The passing of the torch will therefore be a challenge.

A 32-year-old French-Austrian, Hélène Duret studied contemporary history at the École Normale Supérieure and the University of Paris 1 – Sorbonne before joining the École du Louvre, where she specialized in Western art. 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. During her studies, she trained at the Bymuseet in Bergen, Norway, at the Berlinische Galerie in Berlin, at the Louvre Museum and at the LaM in Villeneuve-d'Ascq. A student at the National Heritage Institute, she became a heritage curator in 2020.

She then joined the Valenciennes Museum of Fine Arts as deputy director responsible for cultural development. For four years, she contributed to the museum's renovation and modernization project launched in 2021, while ensuring the management and implementation of the public policy and off-site exhibitions.

Hélène Duret will take up her position at La Piscine de Roubaix in September. “I hope to carry out a creative and generous project, serving a young and dynamic region. It is in particular through its privileged relationship with the public that the incredible success of La Piscine has been built, a link that I wish to amplify so that the museum embodies a living place, open to all audiences”, she announced. It also intends to strengthen the links that the museum maintains with living contemporary artists as well as with local businesses and La Manufacture de Roubaix.

The André Diligent Museum of Art and Industry has been installed since 2001 in the city's former Art Deco swimming pool, built in 1927 by Lille resident Albert Baert. Created in 1835 to preserve samples of textile production, the museum quickly broadened its scope to include fine arts. Its very diverse modern art collections bring together sculptures, paintings, drawings, ceramics, textiles and design pieces. Building on its success, the museum benefited from an extension of more than 2,000 m² in 2018, which allowed it to create new spaces dedicated to the history of Roubaix, temporary exhibitions and educational workshops.

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