Of all the corporate collections, the Collection d’art Nestlé stands out for its solid roots in the town of origin of its founder Henri Nestlé (1814-1890). Created just over half a century ago under the impetus of Jean Tschumi (1904-1962), architect of the multinational’s headquarters at the entrance to Vevey, the Nestlé Art Collection is today one of the region’s most important heritage treasures. It is international in scope and is divided between the "En Bergère" headquarters and the Musée Jenisch Vevey.
Although the contemporary period is mainly represented in the Collection d’art Nestlé, the ensemble brings together works by major artists from the 16th to the 21st century, such as Tiepolo, Tintoretto, Delacroix, Gustave Doré, Eugène Boudin, Picasso, Sol LeWitt, Warhol, Alighiero Boetti, Christo, Brancusi and Annette Messager. It also focuses on graphic arts and Swiss art - from Ferdinand Hodler to Fischli & Weiss, via Alberto Giacometti, Tinguely, Jean-Luc Manz, Franz Gertsch, Alain Huck and Christine Sefolosha. Paintings, works on paper, sculptures and videos are in dialogue with each other.
History of the Collection d’art Nestlé
In 1960, the Nestlé headquarters "En Bergère" was inaugurated, designed by the architect Jean Tschumi. Its atypical curved Y shape makes it one of the first "sculpture buildings" in history. The architect expressed the wish that the building would become a home for new works of art.
An acquisition committee was set up in 1988 under the leadership of Paul R. Jolles (1919-2000). Jolles (1919-2000), then chairman of the board of directors. It was made up of Jean-Christophe Ammann (1939-2015), Kasper König (*1943), Maurice Besset (1921-2008) and Franz Meyer (1919-2007). The committee was active until 1990, and its task is to reflect on the direction of the collection and to propose site-specific productions.
The Fondation d’art Nestlé, chaired by Paul Jolles, took over in 1991, with the aim of supporting young Swiss contemporary art.
The collaboration with the Musée Jenisch Vevey formally began in 1994, at the initiative of Helmut Maucher (1927-2018), then Honorary President, and Peter Brabeck-Letmathe (*1944), then Executive Vice President. The firm deposited a collection of works in the museum, which was enriched over the years, in line with the funds that the institution preserves. The emphasis is on works by Swiss artists or artists linked to Switzerland, while taking into account the main contemporary artistic trends. The Collection d’art Nestlé was the subject of a first exhibition - Nid’Art - at the Musée Jenisch Vevey in 2003. And to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the multinational company, the exhibition Origines et Horizons The Collection d’art Nestlé was organised in 2016.
To date, the Collection d’art Nestlé represents about 300 works, a third of which are in the museum.