This rich collection, containing masterpieces by artists such as Gustaf Lundberg, Alexander Roslin, Adolf Ulrik Wertmüller and Louis-Jean Desprez, reflects artistic contacts between Sweden and France from the 17th century to the present day. The new hanging arrangement and presentation, which also provides a historical framework, shows the full extent of the cultural and political ties between the two countries over the years..
Donation to the Swedish state
Tessininstitutet has been a major part of The Sweidh Institute since the centre moved into the Hôtel de Marle, a townhouse in the Marais district, in 1971. The institute’s founder, Gunnar W. Lundberg, an art historian and cultural counsellor at the Swedish embassy in Paris, persuaded the Swedish government in the early 1960s to acquire the building on behalf of the state. It would provide an appropriate setting for the art collection and library he had built up with passion and expertise since the 1930s. The art collection was donated to the Swedish state when The Swedish Institute opened in 1971. Since then, it has been managed by Nationalmuseum..
Emphasis on the 18th century
Of the collection’s 600 paintings, 5,000 works on paper (watercolours, drawings and graphic works), sculptures, medals and antique books, the largest proportion is from the 18th century. This constitutes a valuable source for researchers with an interest in French and Swedish art history. Works are regularly loaned to exhibitions in France, Sweden and beyond.
Tessininstitutet, Centre Culturel Suédois, Paris.
Library of art history
In parallel with his art collection, Gunnar W. Lundberg built up a library of art history. When The Swedish Institute opened in 1971, a large number of books were donated to the newly opened Umeå university library and to the Bibliothèque Nordique in Paris. The Swedish Institute retained only those works relating to Swedish art history, which now have been transferred to the Bibliothèque Nordique.
Information for visitors
See Centre Culturel Suédois website