A Smorgasbord with a system

2009
spaces #4

Claude Kuhn and Marianne Longatti-Kuhn, Kehrsatz (Switzerland)

The artist Claude Kuhn is an exhibit designer at the Museum of Natural History of the City of Bern and an internationally renowned poster designer. He lives outside of the city, in the town of Kehrsatz, with his wife, Marianne, their dog, Bambi, and two goldfish in a converted truck garage designed by Bernhard Jäggi (saj Architekten AG, Bern). Their house is a smorgasbord of objects, such as “The Ostrich Bouquet,” a preserved ostrich head in a turquoise vase that Kuhn created for his wife. The clear sense of reduction, the “art of omission” and the idiosyncrasy of Kuhn’s posters do not dominate his private space. When asked about this, the 60-year-old artist laughs and says: “I do not tolerate things being too sterile.” What does that mean? This “junk” in my own home is the breeding ground for my creativity. Do you work at home? Inspiration does not come to me at a specific location. Sometimes I develop a design for a poster or an exhibition at the museum, sometimes at home and sometimes just anywhere. Is that a second dog in your living room? Yes, that is Bambi’s predecessor, an homage to Pongo. It is a work by artist Ada Tanner. Does USM Haller bring order into the environment? USM Haller gives us first and foremost a structure for our smorgasbord, and it does so in a functional, appealing way. You have the furniture exclusively in black and anthracite gray. Yes, black and anthracite gray, a timeless way of dressing up our treasures.

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