Collection
Museum Tinguely

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.

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Jean Tinguely


Méta-mechanic sound relief

Sketch
ca. 1955/58

Material / technique: Black ink on paper
Size: 13 x 9 cm
Inv.Number: 3873
Creditline: Museum Tinguely, Basel

The legendary water-powered structures Tinguely built on small streams around Basel as a child already produced sounds. With his sound-making machines, Tinguely rooted himself in the 20th-century avant-garde tradition: when for example the Dadaists performed their abstruse sound poems, they not only wanted to shock upstanding citizens with their apparent nonsense, but also to reveal noise and sound as the fundamental material of which all languages are made. Following in the footsteps of his role model Bruno Munari, an Italian artist, designer and writer of the manifesto Arte Totale (1952), Tinguely strove to create a total work of art that would appeal to as many of the “viewer’s” senses as possible.