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Collections / April 11, 2017—

A Collection of Spaces



MAMCO’s fourth floor gathers artists’ spaces, two artworks from the museum’s collection, and two new spaces dedicated to archives.

Claude Rutault’s Inventaire gathers the entirety of his definitions/methods. This ensemble, first presented at MAMCO in 1994 is now re-installed following the artist’s wish, and still displays an outside wall allowing for the update of any of the works.

Sarkis’ L’Atelier depuis 19380 is the only environment which still bears witness to the wooden “cabins” that characterized the museum when it first opened. The artist considers this space as a “travel studio” which, once or twice a year, he occupies to resume his work. Surrounding the studio the presentation of other projects from the artist of which the museum keeps an important number in its collection.

These two historical artists’ spaces adjoin rooms dedicated to the Ecart Archives and the Concrete Poetry Cabinet.

Ecart Espace: The post-Fluxus activities of the Ecart group have found a location for their re-emergence in Geneva, thanks to the HEAD Geneva, the Print Room of the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire, and the complicity of John Armleder. They are exhibited through a new operatory mode which allows at once to resume the archives’ inventory work and to update projects from the 1970s. This is the case, for instance, with a Dick Higgins’ score, successively interpreted by the Ecart Group, and today by the museum.

Finally, the Cabinet de poésie concrète (Concrete Poetry Cabinet) is dedicated to an artistic and literary movement which widespreads, since the 1950s, from Europe to South America as well as in Asia. The Cabinet is made of 30’000 artworks and documents brought together by Zona Achives, which under the auspices of Maurizio Nannucci and Gabriele Detterer, is one of the biggest private collection in Europe.

This gathering of artists’ spaces on the fourth floor of the museum is intended both to offer a representation of the singularity of the MAMCO collections—through the emphasis on protocol, score and collaboration with the artist as nodal points of the collection’s politics—, and to allow ephemeral, performative and living forms to find a place in its midst. This articulation between archives, collections and performative formats is also a new museographic proposal.

Sophie Costes worked on the re-deployment of Sarkis’ studio and, with artist Emilie Parendeau, of Rutault’s inventory; Paul Bernard was in charge of the organization of the Concrete Poetry Cabinet; and the Ecart display was organized by Lionel Bovier and David Lemaire.