The Art museums hub: two museums, two collections, a new dimension.
In 2018, the City of Lyon created the Art museums hub, which brought together the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon (MBA) and the Contemporary Art Museum (macLYON). Its ambition was to give the city's museums a more dynamic and innovative profile, and to enhance their fame on local, national, and international levels through innovative collaborations. Doing so, Lyon founded the only art museums hub of its kind in France, with artworks spanning from Antiquity to the most contemporary creations.
The Hub is a space where the museums' staff and visitors can experiment, explore new forms of expression, exchange points of view, and bridge old divides. It is an opportunity to create a new kind of museum experience, in touch with our moving, changing world.
The Art museums hub enables each museum to expand its own programme by providing activities which are devised in partnership: artist residencies at both museums, exhibitions on common themes based on works from their respective collections, and programmes where visitors go back and forth between the sites, so they can experience the synergy between the two museums for themselves.
Last but not least, the Hub is an opportunity to play a part in widening the concept of the museum: a place reinventing itself since the beginning of the 21st century. It invites us to create new narratives by forging a connection between two collections, to go beyond their history and individual identities.
In 2020, Cercle 21 was created, bringing together patrons committed to contemporary art in order to support the macLYON. It has been built on the same model as the Cercle Poussin, which has been created in 2010 and has since then supported the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon.
In 2022, the two museums have been working in tandem and launched a year long public consultation in order to gain a better understanding of their audiences and their expectations.
An ambitious programme of acquisition and donation is currently under consideration with the URDLA (international centre for etchings & books in Villeurbanne). It will enhance the collections of etchings held by the Hub's museums. This project will be accompanied by a programme of off site exhibitions and events, the first of which will take place at the Palais Bondy at the beginning of 2024.
Since 2018, the Museum of Fine Arts of Lyon and the Contemporary Art Museum have devised and programmed a cycle of joint exhibitions based on their collections:
Penser en formes et en couleurs (Thinking in shapes and colours) at the MBA in 2019.
Comme un parfum d'aventure (The taste of adventure) at macLYON in 2020.
À la mort, à la vie ! Vanités d’hier et d’aujourd’hui (To life, to death! Vanities past and present) at MBA in 2021.
Two catalogues were published to coincide with the exhibitions Thinking in shapes and colours and To life, to death! Vanities past and present.
Two exhibitions are shown simultaneously in Spring 2022:
Eric Poitevin. Guest from the 20th of April to the 28th of August at the Museum of Fine Arts, in parallel with A family story. Collection(s) Robelin, from the 20th of April to the 10th of July at the macLYON.
Éric Poitevin was given carte blanche by the museum of Fine Arts of Lyon to produce new series of photographs echoing a number of works from its collections. The artist’s selection includes works by Lucas Cranach, Odilon Redon, Frans Snyders and Francisco de Zurbarán. He takes a fresh look at some better and lesser-known works, establishing a true dialogue with his own photographic œuvre. Éric Poitevin presents these works in a whole new light, mapping an original journey for the visitor. Doing so, he provides an insight into his own work and the museum’s collections, evident as well as unexpected. The work of Eric Poitevin is also on show in the exhibition A family story. Collection(s) Robelin.