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Since its creation in 1984, the Musée d’art contemporain de Lyon has chosen to collect exhibitions, which are the ideal opportunity to acquire very specific works, often monumental ones, designed by artists working closely with the museum. Each work of this kind represents a very specific moment in the artist’s body of work.

Indeed, the policy of the macLYON is guided by a few simple principles, of which the most significant is the fact that the Museum is designed to be entirely at the artists’ disposal. The dialogue initiated with them has contributed to the creation of a collection that is primarily a collection of exhibitions. The Museum’s ‘scientific’ objective has determined a few fundamental ideas: the production of artworks, the collection of ‘moments’, representative works and retro-visions or perspectives.

The production of works refers to the support given by the Museum to the artists during the creation or production period of the artwork. The collection of moments means bringing together artworks or collections of artworks representative of a specific period in the artist’s career. The work, which may be generic, monumental or composed of several elements, should encapsulate a particular aspect or characteristic of the work of an artist. A generic work should capture previous aspects of the artist’s work, which it crystallizes in a new theme that contains them all. Retro-vision consists of asking an artist to create a specific piece, an ensemble, device or process, which binds his works, already part of the collection, in a coherence singular to that particular artist.


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