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COMPARING LANDSCAPES. Art, nature and society in Switzerland 1850-192

Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona

From the second half of the 19th century until the First World War, society in Switzerland changed radically with industrialization and urbanization, the development of mobility and tourism. The landscape also underwent a transformation: the intensification of agriculture, nationalisation and the protection of forests modified its structure and appearance.

The «beautiful Swiss landscape» no longer corresponds to the unspoilt ideal of the 18th century, but the nostalgia for this idyllic vision is combined with a desire for realism and modernity. Certainly, in artistic production, the oldest models always count, such as the Dutch views of the 17th century, as well as the trends emerging from the great European centres such as Paris and Munich. However, never have the friendships and cultural exchanges between Swiss painters been as important as they were then, for example the training of Bernese painter Ferdinand Hodler at Barthélemy Menn in Geneva or the stay of Basel-born Arnold Böcklin in Gottfried Steffan's studio in Munich. By bringing the works of these artists into dialogue, the exhibition offers a rare opportunity to understand their relationships, which transcend regional borders, and to contemplate their landscapes with renewed wonder and awareness.

 

With works by Cuno Amiet, Edoardo Berta, Arnold Böcklin, Alexandre Calame, Gustave Castan, François Diday, Hans Emmenegger, Filippo Franzoni, Otto Frölicher, Giovanni Giacometti, Jacques-Elie-Abraham Hermanjat, Ferdinand Hodler, Barthélemy Menn, Alexandre Perrier, Luigi Rossi, Giovanni Segantini, Johann Gottfried Steffan, Félix Vallotton, Robert Zünd and other artists.

Alexandre Calame (Vevey, 1810 - Menton, 1864), Lac des Quatre-Cantons près de Brunnen, 1857, oil on canvas, 90 x 120 cm, Collection Pictet
Eduard Boss (Muri, 1873 - Bern, 1958), Blümlisalp, 1909, oil on canvas, 64.5 x 53.8 cm, Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona, Permanent loan of the Swiss Confederation, Federal Office of Culture, Bern, 1998 © Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona
Jacques-Elie-Abraham Hermanjat (Geneva, 1862 - Aubonne, 1932), Dans les Alpes, 1909, oil on canvas, 90.5 x 67 cm, Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona, Permanent loan of the Swiss Confederation, Federal Office of Culture, Bern, 1998 © Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona
Johann Gottfried Steffan (Wädenswil, 1815 - Munich, 1905), L’Urirostock, sul Lago dei Quattro Cantoni, [1850-1860], oil on canvas on cardboard, 43 x 57.5 cm, Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona, Donated by Fondazione Domenico Noli 2002 © Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona
Elisée (Elysée) Jules Gustave Castan (Geneva, 1823 - Crozant, 1892), Paesaggio con tre pastorelli nei pressi di Crémieu (Delfinato), [1850 - 1870], oil on canvas, 91.2 x 131 cm, Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona, Donated by Fondazione Domenico Noli 2002 © Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona
Edoardo Berta (Giubiasco, 1867 - Lugano, 1931), Ruscello al crepuscolo a Bironico, 1915, oil on panel, 30.7 x 42.5 cm, Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona, Donated by Associazione Amici di Villa dei Cedri 1997 © Museo Villa dei Cedri, Bellinzona
Filippo Franzoni, (Locarno, 1857 – Mendrisio, 1911), Torrente, undated, oil on canvas, 120 × 86 cm, Collection Alexandre Boussat Bolla
Robert Zünd (Lucerne, 1827 – 1909), Eichwald, 1859, oil on canvas, 77.7 × 104.2 cm, Kunstmuseum Luzern, Inv. No. M 87x / Deposit of the Stiftung BEST Art Collection Luzern, formerly Bernhard Eglin-Stiftung
Ferdinand Hodler (Bern, 1853 – Geneva, 1918), Die Bucht von Genf mit dem Mont-Blanc vor Sonnenaufgang, 1918, oil on canvas, 57.5 × 85.5 cm, Kunstmuseum Solothurn, Inv. No. C 80.47 / Dübi-Müller-Stiftung