press release

Jardin d’Hiver #1: Comment peut-on être (du village d’à côté) persan (martien)?
June 18–September 12, 2021

The Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne (MCBA), is pleased to announce the first edition of its biennial exhibition series Jardin d’Hiver dedicated to contemporary art from the region and a solo exhibition of Swiss video art pioneer Jean Otth (1940–2013).

Jardin d’Hiver #1: Comment peut-on être (du village d’à côté) persan (martien)?
With the mysterious title Comment peut-on être (du village d’à côté) persan (martien)? (literally “How can one be [from the nearby village] Persian [Martian]?”), the exhibition examines the concept of the art scene in light of several principles, i.e., guest artists, five independent venues, and collage as a way of visually sizing up the dynamics that run through and structure any art scene. The show’s title is a quotation drawn from the 1972 Encyclopédie de l’utopie, des voyages extraordinaires et de la science-fiction (“Encyclopedia of Utopia, Extraordinary Journeys, and Science Fiction”), by Pierre Versins (1923–2001), a Frenchman living in Lausanne whose own collection would eventually form the original collection of the Maison d’Ailleurs in Yverdon-les-Bains. By appropriating the quotation, curator Jill Gasparina makes the question, which articulates the near and the far on three levels—the “nearby village,” the “Persian,” and the “Martian”—the key to her thinking about what makes and shapes an art scene yet never freezes it in place. The curator has thus chosen to go beyond the question of identity and highlight not only several generations of artists, but also institutional connections (from the off space to the museum, from emerging art practices to the collection). Embracing a logic that is partly subjective and partly based on chance, she has invited a range of artists and art spaces (Circuit, Collectif RATS, Silicon Malley, Tunnel Tunnel, and Urgent Paradise), and these have in turn extended the invitation to others, injecting greater complexity—organically, with each addition—into the network that has been brought to light. The thirty-two participants will be exhibiting both existing artworks and pieces created specifically for the event. The exhibition makes no claims of being the definitive portrait of the contemporary art scene in Vaud. Rather it aims to transmit, in fragmentary form, the broad variety that characterizes it.

Curated by Jill Gasparina, art critic, curator, and teacher at HEAD – Geneva.

Participating artists and art spaces: Alfatih, Jérôme Wilfredo Baccaglio, Francis Baudevin, Giovanna Belossi, Christine Boumeester, Leonora Carrington, Françoise Chaillet, Circuit, Delphine Coindet, Collectif RATS, Ligia Dias, Raquel Dias, Lucas Erin, Mathis Gasser, Julien Gremaud, Rosanne Kapela, Daniela Keiser, Stéphane Kropf, Flora Mottini, Yoan Mudry, Guido Nussbaum, Véra Pagava, Urgent Paradise, Laurence Pittet, Gina Proenza, Denis Savary, Silicon Malley, Viktor Tibay, Anouk Tschanz, Caroline Tschumi, Tunnel Tunnel, and Pierre Vadi.