Hidden treasures

A glimpse into the photographic archives
  • 27 October 2015 - 13 March 2016

    The UNESCO World Day for Audiovisual Heritage on 27 October 2015 aimed to raise awareness of the unique value and fragility of image and sound documents. To mark the occasion, the Museum Rietberg showed unretrieved treasures from its photographic archives.

    At eleven points in the rooms housing the collection visitors were able to view digitised photographs and films from Gabon, Japan, Iran, Peru, Alaska and India taken between 1875 and 1970. The intervention highlighted how the photographs provide important background information on the objects displayed in the museum and raise exciting questions about our own and foreign cultures.

    The Museum Rietberg’s holdings include not only non-European artworks but also films and an estimated 80,000 photographs. While some of these document the objects in the museum, the archives also contain nineteenth- and twentieth-century photographs from Africa, Asia, America and Europe collected from the estates of travellers, diplomats, researchers, collectors and former curators. 

    Some of the photographs already catalogued can be viewed online under: www.rietberg.ch/onlinesammlung

  • Highlights of the exhibition

    Poster & handout


    Handout »


    Press More »


    Event tip

    The Colors of Photography
    30 - 31 October 2015
    International symposium in honour of Dr. h.c. Kaspar M. Fleischmann.

    More »