Cultural patronage receives an Oscar

On 1 July 2014, Societe Generale received the Jacques Rigaud* Oscar for cultural patronage during Admical**'s 29th Oscar ceremony in the presence of Patricia Barbizet, General Manager of Artémis (the Pinault family holding company) and President of the corporate patronage jury for the Oscars, and Henri Loyrette, President of Admical.

The Group has thus been rewarded for its continuous commitment over the past 25 years to classical music and contemporary art. The bank has been outstanding through its constant determination to encourage creativity and innovation in the interests of excellence, and its deliberate policy of open mindedness, closeness and exchanges with all involved – the world of culture, the general public and Group employees.

A major player in the world of classical music

Since the creation in 1987 of the Societe Generale musical patronage association (MMSG), the Bank has developed a musical patronage policy that involves supporting a large number of orchestras and other groups over the long term.

Supporting music means firstly supporting the young musicians who will become the great artists of tomorrow. Besides lending stringed instruments, every year the association gives grants to students of the National Conservatoire in Paris and Lyon. Since 1988, more than 1,000 students have benefited. Support for artists is associated with support for other groups and individuals involved in the world of music who help to keep that heritage alive. In 2014, Societe Generale is partner and sponsor to 17 orchestras and other groups, who together give about 700 concerts and performances every year in France and abroad. The association also supports venues such as the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord, the Festival d'Automne in Paris and the musical season at the Museum of Grenoble.

Keeping our musical heritage alive also means making it accessible to all segments of the public, including through the funding of educational projects such as the Demos orchestra for young people, which makes it possible for 450 children to practice classical music.

Discover MMSG's website

One of the largest collections of contemporary art held by a bank in France

Sponsoring art is the second part of Societe Generale’s corporate patronage of culture. Its collection of contemporary art includes almost 350 original works and 700 lithographs, editions and silk-screen prints.

As a pioneering collection initiated in 1995 when moving into the new head office in La Défense, it was intended to send a strong message to employees, creating harmony between the world of art and that of business and adding a little soul to the shared areas of the Group’s head office. Revolving around three pillars – painting, sculpture and photography – it combines works by celebrated artists with those of more recent creators, often from emerging movements, reflecting the Group’s international nature.

As a vibrant collection open to the world, it has been constantly reinvented and renewed thanks to some daring initiatives combining sharing, dialogue and education: regular exhibitions in partnership with French and international museums (the Moscow Multimedia Art Museum and the LAAC in Dunkirk in 2014), the opening up of the acquisitions committee to employees in 2011, regular cooperation with independent curators since 2011 and partnerships with the world of academia since 2012 (Sciences Po in Paris and Paris I Panthéon Sorbonne). Finally, the collection can now be visited by the general public by simply booking on the internet site.

Discover the Collection's website

* Created in memory of Jacques Rigaud, an emblematic figure in patronage and culture, this Oscar is intended to draw attention to a corporate sponsor who supports culture in all its forms and to reward outstanding corporate sponsors for their policies of innovation, sustainability and ethics.

** Admical is an association that encourages corporate patronage. It includes and represents all corporate sponsors. Founded in 1979 and officially recognised as being of public value since 1992, it is a meeting place for information, exchanges, discussion and the education of corporate sponsors. Admical has 190 members, including 130 companies in Paris, and has created regional networks.