On the conviction that it is important to keep one’s finger on the pulse of the time, the Swiss couple Arthur and Hedy Hahnloser-Bühler amassed an extensive collection of Post-Impressio nist art between 1906 and 1936. Their unique holdings comprise works by nearly all of the great trailblazers of modernism in art, from van Gogh to Cézanne, Manet to Vallotton, and Manguin to Renoir. The collectors gave special priority to the Nabis artists Félix Vallotton, Pierre Bonnard and Édouard Vuillard, and to the Fauves around Henri Matisse.
Through the artworks and the friendly exchange between the artists and the collectors, the Villa Flora – the Hahnlosers’ home in Winterthur – became a venue of the unity of art and life and the awakening modern age. Beyond the boundaries of private art patronage, these activities had a fruitful impact on the collecting policies of public institutions.
The exhibition “Flora Awakening” presents some 100 paintings and sculptures by fifteen artists from the historical Hahnloser collection. These works enter into dialogue with works from the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart’s own holdings, thus shedding light on the productive interaction between private and public approaches to artcollecting.
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The master carpenter Johann Heinrich Heider (1814-50) builds a craftman’s house in the classicistic style according to his own design.
Johann Heinrich Bühler-Guyer, grandfather of Hedy Hahnloser-Bühler, buys the house and extends it by a storage and commercial section for the spinning company run by the family. A commercial building emerges in the garden
Hedy Bühler buys the property and moves there after her marriage with Arthur Hahnloser. He installs his first eye-doctor’s practice in the house.
Arthur Hahnloser’s practice rooms are moved to the private hospital at the Lindberg. The “Flora” is now used exclusively as a residential home. The interior, continually being replenished especially by Hedy as a skilled artisan, becomes the ideal setting for the developing art collection.
The architects Rittmeyer & Furrer are commissioned with the integration of a salon conceived in the Secession style using geometrical surfaces. The salon designed for the “Flora” is initially presented at an interior design exhibition at the Zurich Museum for Arts and Crafts.
The architect Robert Rittmeyer landscapes the garden of the “Flora” in geometrical design and in alignment with the large sculpture by Maillol L’Eté (Summer) (1911) and Pomone (1910/1911). The house, the garden and the collection thus coalesce to form a unique ensemble.
Regularly seeking recreation in Southern France, Arthur and Hedy Hahnloser-Bühler decide to by the house “La Pauline” directly by the sea in Cannes in 1923.
In order to adequately present the meanwhile extensive art collection, a top-lit hall is built into the “Flora” based on the design of Robert Rittmeyer.
With the death of Arthur Hahnloser, the expansion of the collection comes to an end. Hedy receives many art enthusiasts in her house.
After the death of Hedy Hahnloser-Bühler, daughter Lisa Hahnloser-Jäggli and her family move into the “Flora”. As the host, she invites many interested visitors and engages in acting as a mediator for the art works remaining in the house
The descendants of the collector couple establish the Hahnloser/Jaeggli Foundation in order to maintain and keep alive the heritage of the ancestors.
The supporting association Villa Flora is founded with the aim of allowing the public to gain access to the “Flora” and the collection.
The house is opened as a museum under the name “Villa Flora Winterthur. Sammlung Hahnloser”. The curators of the collection are Dr. Ursula Perucchi-Petri (until 2007) and Dr. Angelika Affentranger-Kirchrath who heads the collection to date.
Due to communal savings the museum is temporarily closed.
The collection is presented, in varying compilations, in the Hamburger Kunsthalle, at the Musée Marmottan Monet in Paris, the Kunstmuseum Halle (Saale) and the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart.
From August 2017 The collection of the “Villa Flora” will be entrusted to the Kunstmuseum Bern as a permanent loan for the next 15 years. Please find further information on the website http://villaflora.ch
Zur Ausstellung erscheint ein reich bebilderter Katalog in deutscher Sprache;
100 Seiten, 128 farbige Abb.
28,5 x 22 cm, Festeinband
19,90 € im Museumsshop
(Buchhandelspreis 24,90 €)
Zur Ausstellung ist eine Audioführung in deutscher Sprache für 5€ an der Kasse erhältlich. Diese wurde in Zusammenarbeit mit Antenna InternationalTM erstellt.
under the patronage of