Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts

The Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts (French: Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts, MCBA) is an art museum in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts
Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts
Left building houses the MCBA
LocationLausanne, Switzerland
Coordinates46.5179913°N 6.6254402°E / 46.5179913; 6.6254402
DirectorBernard Fibicher
CuratorCatherine Lepdor
OwnerCanton of Vaud


The museum was created by private initiative in 1841, with funds provided by the artist Marc-Louis Arlaud, who became its first curator. Private funds still help the acquisition process with gifts and legacies. In 2014, the museum conserved around 10,000 artworks. A part of them retrace a general history of art, beginning with ancient Egypt, but the largest part focuses on art from the end of the eighteenth century to post-impressionism. The reputation of the museum is due to five great collections : those of Abraham-Louis-Rodolphe Ducros (1748-1810), Charles Gleyre (1806-1874), Théophile-Alexandre Steinlen (1859-1923), Félix Vallotton (1865-1925) and Louis Soutter (1871-1942).

Modern and contemporary art collections includes works by Marcel Broodthaers, Rolf Iseli, Tadeusz Kantor, Charles Rollier, Daniel Spoerri or Maria Elena Vieira da Silva. Expressive figuration is extensively represented by Günter Brus, Luciano Castelli, Miriam Cahn, Martin Disler, Leiko Ikemura, Arnulf Rainer, Klaudia Schifferle, and Jean-Frédéric Schnyder, among others.

In the years 1990-2010, the museum focused on the acquisition of majors works by international artists such as Christian Boltanski, Tom Burr, Sophie Calle, Alfredo Jaar, Nalini Malani, Bruce Nauman and Jim Shaw, as well as representing local artists such as Jean-Luc Manz, Alain Huck, Silvie Defraoui, Didier Rittener, Denis Savary and Anne-Julie Raccoursier.

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