Hans Erni Museum

Hans Erni Museum, Lucerne

Since 1979, the striking hexagonal building of the Hans Erni Museum, designed by the Geneva architect Jean-Marie Ellenberger (1913-1988), has been located in the Museum of Transport complex. This was done at the request of the artist Hans Erni (1909-2015), so that his works would not only arouse visitors’ interest in science, technology and progress, but also provide a critical counterweight to an overly affirmative presentation of the aforementioned themes.

On the first floor, exhibits from the collections of the Swiss Museum of Transport and the Hans Erni Foundation, which is the museum’s sponsor, create a visual link between the two institutions.

The collection exhibition on the 1st floor documents the content and craft facets of the artist Hans Erni. They provide a glimpse of a unique work and life that has engaged with contemporary, cultural, technical and ecological themes.

On the second floor, next to the auditorium with Hans Erni’s mural Panta rhei on European intellectual history, is the space for temporary exhibitions.

The special exhibitions show Hans Erni’s work in connection with older art, which he appreciated or referred to, but also with works of his and our contemporaries.

The complex of collection, temporary exhibitions and auditorium allows not only to place the work of the artist, who was for decades as controversial as he was appreciated, in the context of the art of his and our time, but also to discuss virulent questions of our days in exhibitions and events. Thus, in the spirit of its founder, the Hans Erni Museum assumes a role comparable to the “urban function of the agora at the time” (Hans Erni).