MUSEC - Museum of Cultures
Lugano’s Museum of Cultures features collections dedicated to the civilizations of the Far East, India, South East Asia and Oceania. Its new headquarters, housed in the 18th century Villa Malpensata on the shores of Lake Lugano, has a design layout that evolves continuously, and is based on the most recent standards of contemporary museology. The museum is an important centre of research on the anthropology of art, and offers the public the option of viewing at least three exhibitions simultaneously. Each of these exhibits, according to their own specific thematic characteristics, is designed to demonstrate the wealth and overall complexity of the museum’s cultural project.
The museum’s Treasure Space ("Spazio Tesoro", free admission), whose design layout is updated periodically, hosts the works from the Brignoni Collection, in addition to some of the museum’s other main collections. This stimulating itinerary enables visitors to engage with the themes and works showcased in the museum’s other exhibition spaces, at times anticipating them and, at others, providing invaluable keys to their interpretation which are useful to understand the holistic nature of the museographic project.
Exhibitions organized by thematic cycles are displayed on a rotational basis in the other exhibition spaces. The hallmark feature of the program is the launch of an exhibition cycle titled "Ethnopassion", which is dedicated to analysing the role played by tribal, oriental and mainstream arts in developing avant-garde European languages.
"Altrarti" is a section dedicated to different genres of ethnic arts.
"Esovisioni" presents a series of exhibitions on travel photography and the theme of exoticism in the work of famous photographers. MUSEC also hosts, studies and promotes one of the largest and most important collections in the world of Japanese albumen prints from the Yokohama School of Photography.
"OrientArt" deals with the various forms of derivation and integration between contemporary art and local cultural traditions, from where Asian, African and Oceanic artists have drawn inspiration for their work.
Finally, "Cameredarte" consists of an exhibition cycle that displays and promotes the collections of collectors, as well as those of artists who have been involved with the museum’s activities over the past few years.