Switzerland’s Muzeum Susch opens in a redesigned rural monastery

Switzerland’s Muzeum Susch opens in a redesigned rural monastery

Located among the picturesque remnants of an old rural monastery in the idyllic and remote setting of the Engadin valley, Switzerland’s latest home for the arts, Muzeum Susch, has opened its doors to the public.

Designed by Zurich-based architecture firm Voellmy Schmidlin Architektur – led by Chasper Schmidlin and Lukas Voellmy – the new contemporary art museum is the brainchild of Polish entrepreneur and art patron Grażyna Kulczyk. The building was founded and created by Kulczyk to house her collection in a series of site-specific installations as well as temporary shows, set to become part of the global art crowd’s cultural schedule.

Founded by Grażyna Kulczyk, the museum was designed by Swiss architecture firm Voellmy Schmidlin Architektur. Photography: Studio Stefano Graziani, Muzeum Susch, Art Stations Foundation CH

The architects worked with existing structures – the remains of the former vicarage, hospice and brewery spaces of the monastery originally established in 1157 – expanding and sensitively reimagining the interiors around the collection’s art, and composing site-specific moments throughout the complex. Their aim was to create a journey that respects and honours the existing architecture, while working to highlight the artwork in the best possible way. Meanwhile, elements of the site’s natural rock formations remain exposed, connecting the museum to the surrounding natural landscape.

Now Muzeum Susch includes over 1,500sq m of temporary and permanent gallery spaces, while the modern complex also houses Instituto Susch, an academic institute supporting research on gender issues in art and science, and Acziun Susch, a performative programme on the the art of contemporary choreography.

The opening show, ‘A Woman Looking at Men Looking at Women’ focuses on the ‘notion of the feminine’, explains its curator Kasia Redzisz, and features work by over 30 international artists. §

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