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Kunstmuseum Luzern devotes exhibition to the phenomenon of public and private collecting
Installation view of the exhibition. Photo:Marc Latzel.

LUCERNE.- ‘The collector is closest to the artist; because he has the same motivation for his work. We have been on a lifelong quest for intimacy,’ the Central Swiss artist Alois Lichtsteiner writes in the publication accompanying this year’s presentation of the collection. To mark the extensive gift from two Geneva art collectors it is devoted to the phenomenon of public and private collecting. The couple have specialised in Swiss contemporary art for decades, and assembled a collection closely related to that of the Kunstmuseum Luzern. Based on the holdings that entered the collection in the time of Jean-Christophe Ammann, the Kunstmuseum Luzern collection focuses on Swiss art from the 1970s, which was extended by the gift of the Toni Gerber collection in 2009. Since in times of scarce public funds museums on their own are increasingly unable to fulfil their task of assembling collections representative of their geographical, historical or genre-related areas, the support of private individuals is particularly important.

Thanks to the donation, the collection of the Kunstmuseum is being enriched by 18 works and groups of works by John Armleder, Samuel Buri, Martin Disler, Franz Fedier, Walter Grab, Urs Lüthi, Markus Raetz, Dieter Roth, Albrecht Schnider, Annelies Štrba and Aldo Walker. This means that gaps in the Kunstmuseum Luzern are being filled, and developments becoming visible. In the exhibition larger groups of work give an overview of the work of individual artists. The rooms, which have been changed three times, show both collections in dialogue with one another. In this polyphonic conversation, alongside Miriam Cahn, Helmut Federle, Sylvie Fleury, Stefan Gritsch, Lenz Klotz, the Zürich Concrete group, Alois Lichtsteiner and Josef Felix Müller, there is an opportunity to hear from various artists from Western Switzerland who have not been shown very much for long time in German-speaking Switzerland, such as Stéphane Dafflon, Philippe Decrauzat, Michel Grillet, Alain Huck, Carmen Perrin and Maurice Robert.

The presentation includes a great variety of stylistic trends. Tachisme and Informel are represented as well as Concrete Art, the Fluxus movement and Conceptual Art. As well as an overview of important movements in Swiss art the exhibition stimulates collectors to reflect on collecting, its motivations, preconditions and consequences. These subjects are picked up in the varied accompanying programme.

Artists in the exhibition: John M. Armleder, Max Bill, Samuel Buri, Miriam Cahn, Stéphane Dafflon, Philippe Decrauzat, Martin Disler, Helmut Federle, Franz Fedier, Sylvie Fleury, Fritz Glarner, Walter Grab, Michel Grillet, Stefan Gritsch, Alain Huck, Lenz Klotz, Alois Lichtsteiner, Verena Loewensberg, Urs Lüthi, Ernst Maass, Max von Moos, Josef Felix Müller, Willy Müller-Brittnau, Carmen Perrin, Markus Raetz, Maurice Robert, Dieter Roth, Albrecht Schnider, Annelies Strba, Ben Vautier, Aldo Walker

Curated by Heinz Stahlhut

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