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Centre national des arts plastiques

Requesting a long-term loan

Requesting a long-term loan

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Requesting a long-term loan

Submitting a formal request, Commission schedule

Long-term loans mean Cnap collection artworks are made available to the public, for installation in a government building or a museum institution for a period of a year or more.

In this manner an estimated 55,000 artworks have been placed on long-term loans across France since the early 19th century.

Long-term loans support the establishment and development of regional museums; they also contribute to furnishing and decorating the many French State organisations and local authorities: town halls, religious buildings, schools, courthouses, prefectures, hospitals and military organisations, as well as French diplomatic missions abroad.

New long-term loans currently are made mainly to public cultural institutions, in particular museums and regional contemporary art collections, but also to government organisations, parliamentary assemblies, etc.

Artworks from the French State’s contemporary art collection may also be placed on long-term loan to museums abroad.

The regulatory framework for short-term and long-term loan of the artworks and art objects registered in the inventory of the Fonds national d’art contemporain is set out in the French Heritage Code, especially in Articles D.113-1 to D. 113-10 and D. 113-24 to D. 113-26. In particular, it specifies the obligations of long-term borrowers.


Long-term loans are currently granted for a renewable 1- to 5-year period.

Organisations eligible for long-term loans include:

- museums, institutions and organisations of a cultural nature operating on a non-profit basis;

- historical monuments belonging to a public entity, provided they are open to the public;

- presidential residences, residences attributed to the French Prime Minister;

- buildings attributed to government organisations (ministries, prefectures, French embassies abroad, etc.), to independent public authorities (the Senate, the National Assembly, etc.), and to French national public institutions;

- museums abroad.


The long-term loan request must be written and signed on the organisation’s letterhead; it must state the name of the administrative officer who will sign the loan agreement.

The letter should include:

- the name of the organisation applying for a long-term loan;

- the full address of the display facility;

- the list of requested artworks mentioning the inventory number;

- the facility’s display and security conditions (“facility report”), allowing the Loans Commission to examine the conservation conditions;

- the full contact details of the person in charge of the matter;

- the full contact details of the administrative officer who will sign the loan agreement.


The head of the organisation (or its supervisor) should send the long-term loan request to Béatrice Salmon, Director of the Centre national des arts plastiques, at least six months prior to the date when the works are to be made available.

Please check the schedule of the Loans Commission on the Cnap website to ensure you submit your request within the set deadlines.


Requests are considered by the Centre national des arts plastiques’s Loans Commission according to a set schedule.

The Commission consists of the Centre national des arts plastiques collections managers, the head of the Collections Department, the head of the Administrative Department, the head of the Acquisitions Department, a representative of the Service des musées de France and a representative of the Musée national d’art moderne.

The Loans Commission examines the applicant’s scientific and cultural project, the conditions under which the artworks will be displayed and showcased, and the technical feasibility of the long-term loan (state of conservation of the artwork, duration requested, etc.). The Commission also assesses the security and conservation guarantees of the venue mentioned in the “facility report” accompanying the request, and makes recommendations for transportation and packing.


Borrowing an artwork from the Cnap entails a number of commitments from the long-term borrower: following instructions for transportation, packing and insurance, ensuring the maintenance and conservation of the work for the entire duration of the loan, returning the work in good condition, providing information when one or more works are moved, meeting the standards for preventive conservation, covering restoration costs in case of damage, obtaining the consent of the Cnap prior to any restoration work, making an extension request, etc.

Government organisations with artworks on long-term loan are required to send an annual condition report each year. (Upcoming: document available for download on the right).


The agreement permitting the long-term loan of an artwork must be signed by the borrower, the Cnap, and the Directorate General of Artistic Creation (Ministry of Culture and Communications) before the work can leave the premises. It is therefore necessary to anticipate the request by taking into account the time necessary for the authorisation process that the borrower will be subject to (for instance, board of director or city council decisions). Long-term loans of works to museums abroad require additional administrative formalities (exit permit to leave the country, etc.).

The certificate of insurance of the works covering transportation and the duration of the long-term loan must imperatively reach the Administrative Division fifteen days before the works are to be collected. The carrier will not be allowed to collect the works if that certificate has not been provided.


Any request for a long-term loan extension must reach the Cnap two months before the original end date of the loan as stated in the agreement. It will be subject to the consideration of the Loans Commission.

In case of approval, a new agreement will be drafted.


The costs of packing, transportation, insurance, framing, video duplication, supplies related to the implementation and installation of the works, are covered by the borrower. Restoration costs may be incurred by the borrower, after consultation with the Cnap.

It is therefore important to have prepared a projected budget at the time of your request.

Dernière mise à jour le 13 Nov 2019

Long-term loan requests should be sent to the attention of Béatrice Salmon, Director of the Centre national des arts plastiques

Centre national des arts plastiques
1, place de la Pyramide Tour Atlantique
92911 Paris-La Défense
locate on a map

For further information, please contact :

Sophie Sansonetti
Administrative Division
Long-Term Loans Management
T. +33 (0)1 46 93 05 48