About the museum
Perm Museum of Contemporary Art (PERMM) was founded in 2009 by gallerist Marat Guelman, with the support of Perm Krai governor Oleg Chirkunov and senator Sergei Gordeev. For its first five years the museum was located in the former river terminal building in the historical center of the city. In summer 2014, it moved into a new building in the industrial area of Motovilikha. Initially, the museum was a central element of a major regional program to transform Perm’s cultural life through a new cultural policy, which was known colloquially as the Perm Cultural Revolution.
Up to 2019, PERMM organized over 100 exhibition projects, some of which toured to the cities and towns of Perm Krai and to Moscow, St. Petersburg, Samara, Novosibirsk, Almaty, and Milan.
The “Perm wave” in Russian contemporary art began with PERMM’s exhibition Russian Povera (curated by Gelman), which opened in the river terminal in 2008. It presented a Russian version of arte povera and featured works by key Russian contemporary artists. Many of those works were later acquired for the museum’s collection, which today comprises over 1,300 items. PERMM has become an important cultural center on the regional and national levels: today it works with Perm artists and communities, studies the national art scene, and organizes international exhibitions.
The PERMM archive grew out of the museum’s institutional archive. Its key mission is to collect and preserve materials related to contemporary art in Perm. The collection includes invitations, exhibition booklets, photographs and video recordings of events, press releases, press clippings, interviews, and artists’ descriptions and sketches of works. In recent years the archive has added to its collection documents from Perm-based artists and institutions, including the self-organized space Dom Gruzchika and ArtPolitika School of Contemporary Art.