Presentation of the Carlos Schwabe graphic holdings at the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire in Geneva

Carlos Schwabe (1866-1926)
Woman with a Lyre, 1908
Watercolour - 21 x 15.5 cm
Geneva, Musée d’Art et d’Histoire
Photo : Musée d’Art et d’Histoire

2/12/10 – Hang – Geneva, Musée d’Art et d’Histoire - The entire graphic collection of Carlos Schwabe’s (1866-1926) work held at the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire in Geneva will be highlighted in a rotating presentation from 1st December 2010 to 6 March 2011. Strangely, the artist’s works had not been displayed since 1987 when the museum had organized a retrospective, despite the fact that several acquisitions had been made. During this interval, several of the artist’s masterpieces were presented regularly in various international exhibitions (just recently at the Musée d’Orsay with The Wave as well as several drawings for the illustration of The Words of a Believer for the exhibition, Crime and Punishment, and also at the Musée du Louvre when it presented the Georges Pébereau collection) but the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire did not exhibit any of these emblematic Symbolist productions, although Schwabe is its main representative here in Geneva, along with Ferdinand Hodler.
We are very happy therefore to welcome this program which allows visitors to finally enjoy many of these watercolours and drawings in four stages. The Musée d’Art et d’Histoire in Geneva in fact holds the most important collection of Schwabe works (more so than the Musée d’Orsay, the Museum of Fine Arts in Rio de Janeiro and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam), made up of pieces acquired directly from the artist, then from the large bequest donated by the family in 1927 (including all of the oils and most of the drawings), rounded out by other purchases made since the 80’s. Besides three watercoulours for The Dream, important sheets such as Passion, The Faun, The Poet Walking, and the late version of The Virgin with Lilies, the museum owns several exceptional oils such as The Wave, mentioned above, but also Pain, the 1891 masterpiece, Homer on the Champs-Elysées and several landscapes. Some of these masterpieces will also be hung for an upcoming Symbolist show reflecting the renewed interest in this movement in international museum and university circles, including, fortunately, those in neighboring Switzerland.

Jean-David Jumeau-Lafond, jeudi 2 décembre 2010

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