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


Plateau agriculturel

1978

Material / technique: Parts of agricultural machines (red), scrap iron, garden gnome, electric motor, 20 iron pedestals
Size: Plateau 50 x 850 x 460, H 200 cm
Inv.Number: 11251
Catalog: Bischofberger 0553
Creditline: Museum Tinguely, Basel, Donation Micheline und Claude Renard

“Le Plateau agriculturel“ is a work in which Tinguely showcases the full scope of his genius and crafts skills. The interplay between the individual parts and the way they come together to make a unit is the theme here. The parts taken from agricultural machinery are painted the typical red colour. In conjunction with the noises made by the machine sculpture, the overall impression recalls by turns work, dance and theatre. The “Plateau agriculturel“ was created in 1978 for the first Hammer Exhibition, a display of works by international artists organised by gallerist Felix Handschin in the factory halls on Basel’s Hammerstrasse. The “Plateau agriculturel” in a way forms a counterpart to the Basel “Fasnachtsbrunnen”, which was dedicated the previous year on the square in front of the theatre and the Kunsthalle. Here as there, we find various sculptures within a defined area that enter into a dialogue with one another and with the viewer. The plateau and the fountain basin become a stage across which the human-sized figures move, dancer-like, with elegant, light-hearted steps.