Friday, May 27, 2011

Cuno Amiet in the Kunsthaus

Some time ago I wrote about a visit to the Kunsthaus in Zurich and I showed this beautiful room, with the two Bonnards lining the entranceway and the Degas just beyond.

Last year the Kunsthaus celebrated its centenary and had this room restored to its original 1910 state. The Bonnards have been moved to a room nearby and the walls now display the paintings that hung here when the museum opened. The paintings are a series form the Swiss artist Cuno Amiet. The Degas can still be seen facing the entranceway. When Amiet's paintings were orginally exhibited they were considered to be very avant-garde and described by the local press as "hateful, brutal and sick".

Now it is as if the room has been frozen in time. I love the skylight, the carpet, the pillars, and though the paintings are less colourful than the Bonnards, the room does have a great sense of Jugendstil wholeness.


  1. Hello:
    It is quite by chance that we have discovered your most interesting, and often quite eclectic, blog.

    What you describe here about this particular room in the Kunsthaus in Zurich is fascinating. And yes, whilst the Bonnards each side of the door were well placed, it is perhaps appropriate that the room should be returned to its original 1910 appearance.

    Sadly, in the Szépmúvészeti here in Budapest what is, after all, a remarkable collection is hung with a complete lack of imagination or flair. A return to the past might well not go amiss.

  2. I didn't know the name Cuno Amiet. In any case, I would have no problem with the Amiet paintings being clearly less colourful than the Bonnards. If the Kunsthaus in Zurich was going for a true sense of Jugendstil wholeness, the Bonnards possibly did not fit in with the ethos as well.

  3. Jane and Lance,
    Glad that you found my blog. Hope you'll enjoy it. The last time I was in Budapest was back in 1982 - I'm sure it has changed since then.

    Hels, I'm happy to intriduce you to a new painter :-) Amiet has been referred to as the "Swiss Bonnard". He was a good friend of Giovanni Giacometti and a member of the Vienna Seccesionists and Die Brucke.

  4. That is so Pretty!