Collection Online of Museum Tinguely

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Jean Tinguely

La Vache Suisse - Corso Fleurie


Material / technique: Scrap iron, wooden wheel, skull, plastic flowers, electric motor
Size: 200 x 210 x 110 cm
Inv.Number: 11381
Catalog: Bischofberger 0939
Creditline: Museum Tinguely, Basel, Donation Niki de Saint Phalle

In size and monumentality, this portrait of a Swiss cow seems to enjoy equal standing with the artist’s “ancestral gallery“ of “philosophers“. The two-metre-tall skull-headed creature, decorated like a prize-winning alpine cow, nods regally at the viewer with a superior air. With a great deal of humour, the fabric of the structure alludes to the special features of this animal, such as its thick neck and elongated body with solid hindquarters and playful tail. The skull is affixed in such a way that it stares us directly in the eye. Tinguely succeeds with this amusing machine creature, which consists of nothing more than a framework or skeleton, to nonetheless suggest the volumes and body forms of the animal.

Pictures in our Collection

The following applies for uses of pictures in relation to our collection:
Museum Tinguely does not own any copyright in works by Jean Tinguely or other artists in the collection. The clarification of these rights and payment in respect of them is a matter for the applicant. In Switzerland, the collecting society responsible for this is ProLitteris, Zurich (link website: Museum Tinguely undertakes no liability for third party claims arising from infringement of copyright and personality rights.

Collection of Museum Tinguely

Works and work groups belonging to all phases of Jean Tinguely’s career are to be found in the museum's collection. Along with selected temporary loans, they afford the visitor an extensive view of the artist’s career. Apart from sculptures, the collection furthermore comprises a large number of drawings and letter-drawings, documents, exhibition posters, catalogues and documentation such as photographs. In the measure of the possible all the exhibits are accessible to the public and regularly shown, be it in the permanent collection or as loans to exhibitions worldwide.

The museum’s collections are the result of a generous donation by the artist’s widow, Niki de Saint Phalle, made on the occasion of its foundation, a donation of works from the Roche collection, as well as several other gifts and acquisitions.

>> Biography of Jean Tinguely

>> History of the collection