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Swiss centre set to open in Lens to honour Pierre Arnaud

The new arts centre will present two annual exhibitions, starting with 'Divisionism'

Lens, Switzerland

The Pierre Arnaud Foundation, established in memory of the French collector in 2007, is due to open an art centre in the Swiss village of Lens, 100km from Lucerne, in December. Designed by the local architecture firm of Jean-Pierre Emery, the centre has cost SFr13.5m ($14.3m).

The foundation will provide SFr2.7m a year to run the centre, which plans to organise two exhibitions annually, starting with “Divisionism”. Winter exhibitions will focus on major pictorial movements between 1850 and 1950 and will feature works by Swiss painters and others from the Alpine region. Summer exhibitions will present “encounters between Primitive arts and significant 20th-century artistic trends”, says Christophe Flubacher, the artistic director of the centre.

The first summer exhibition will explore the relationship between Surrealism and Primitive arts. Flubacher says: “This focus is based on the conviction that there are bridges between ancient and contemporary civilisations that can shed new light on our lives today.” This is the first time that works from the Arnaud collection will be shown to the public. Many pieces will also come from public and private collections.

Inaugural loans include Giovanni Giacometti’s Evening on the Alp, 1908, from the Museo Cantonale d’Arte de Lugano, and Seurat’s The Lighthouse at Honfleur, 1886, lent by Inna Bazhenova (the publisher of The Art Newspaper in Russia).

Originally appeared in The Art Newspaper as 'Swiss centre to honour collector'