Vehicles - November 8, 2013 through April 27, 2014



Of unique historic value, the Collection de l’Art Brut holdings comprise over 60,000 paintings, drawings, sculptures, fabric works and writings, To showcase such an invaluable treasure trove, the museum's new director, Ms. Sarah Lombardi, proposes to mount a series of exhibitions devoted exclusively to pieces belonging to this Lausanne institution. As their name—The Art Brut Biennials—indicates, these shows are to take place every two years: each will display, under the banner of a shared thematic slant, works never before shown and works already exhibited.

The present show, the first of the new series, addresses means of transport. It brings together over 200 pieces by forty-two authors, disclosing at once the latter's distinctive production modes, together with a diversity of techniques, materials, dimensions and/or formal languages. The bilingual (French/English) publication accompanying this exhibition represents the first of a new series entitled Art Brut, la Collection, published jointly with 5 Continents Editions of Milan, Italy. Destined for release internationally, this major publication treats readers to a virtual tour of the museum collections.

Vehicles of the most rudimentary kind or of a more technical nature, and whether intended for travel by air, land or water, have always fascinated mankind. Incorporating a link with the childhood world with which Art Brut creators tend to remain attached, vehicles also embody an idea of power, both physically and sexually, as if to prolong human aptitudes.

Some Art Brut creators take vehicles as their only subject, so that their entire production involves variations of a single motif. Such creators constitute lists, series or repertories where each plane, car or train is depicted in a most orderly and precise fashion, as in the work of Motooka Hidenori, David Braillon and Gregory Blackstock. These creators feel the need to classify objects in a strict and obsessive manner that reveals their basic need to organize or even take possession of the world.

Others are attracted by the larger world of transport in general, a theme inextricably linked to the idea of travel and trips; as such, it can be synonymous with discovery and experience—as in the work of Willem Van Genk—but also with danger. Thus, the pieces by Loma Hylton and Shi Yi Feng allude to the threatening side of vehicles, the disturbing chaos generated by a multitude of moving engines.

Creators André Robillard and Eric Zablatnik show a preference for futuristic constructions, flying machines and engines featuring propellers or motors. Driven by their dreams, these utopians became transformed into avant-gardist mechanics enthused by motion and bearings systems, in the manner of Fausto Badari, Serge Delaunay and Emile Ratier.

The act of creating enables many of those in the field of Art Brut, and especially those who are immobilized, to escape their personal condition and to thus take their existence, as difficult as it may be, into their own hands. For Clément Fraisse, Auguste Forestier and Sylvain Lecocq, the topic of vehicles symbolizes above all their need for liberty.

Article in "Matin Dimanche", november 3rd 2013

Article in "24Heures", november 9th 2013

Article in "L'illustré", november 2013

Article on RTS's website

Article in Il Giornale dell'Arte page 1/ page2

Article in Connaissance des Arts, march 2014

Article in Arts Magazine, march 2014

Article in l'Oeil, march 2014

Article in Artension N° 124, march-april 2014, page 1/ page 2/ page 3

Article in Le Quotidien de l'Art, 6.03.2014

Article in Le Journal des Arts, 14.03.2014

Article in Libération, march 25 2014, page 1/ page 2

Article in Artpassions march 2014

Practical information


November 8, 2013 - april 27, 2014

Opening reception

Thursday 7 November 2013, 6:30pm

Rétrobus Event
Lausanne's former (1932) trackless tram will afford the public a tour starting from the Collection de l’Art Brut (from 7:30 to 9pm).


Sarah Lombardi

Exhibition curator

Anic Zanzi, curator at the Collection de l’Art Brut

Publications (separate in french and english)

  • Michel Thévoz and Anic Zanzi, with a Preface by Sarah Lombardi, Vehicles, Lausanne/Milan, Collection de l’Art Brut/5 Continents Editions, 2013, Art Brut, la collection Directed by Sarah Lombardi. 20,5 x 25,5 cm, 168 pages, 130 color illustrations.
  • Anic Zanzi, Véhicules d’Art Brut, Paris, Editions Thierry Magnier, 2013, 16 x 21 cm, 32 pages.


The Vehicles exhibition is partially accessible to people with reduced mobility.

Free guided tours

sunday, 17 november 11am
saturday, 25 january, 2pm
sunday, 16 february 11am
saturday, 29 march 2pm
online booking,within the limits of the seats available.

Free interactive tours
For children (ages 4 - 8)

sunday, 24 november 2pm
sunday, 23 march 2pm
online booking, within the limits of the seats available.

Young Public workshops (ages 6-10)

saturday, 25 january 2pm
wednesday 12 february 2pm
wednesday 12 mars 2pm
saturday 29 march 2pm
online booking, within the limits of the seats available.

Guided tours

Upon request for groups and classes: in French, German, English and Italian.

Free guided tours for teachers

Tuesday 26 november 5pm
A pedagogical file can be downloaded at > visit > group and class
online booking, within the limits of the seats available.

Download educational kit
list of books at Bibliomédia (6-8 years) et (9-10 years)
also see

Events linked to the exhibition:

  • Sunday Rétrobus shuttles
From 10:45am to 18:30pm : a 1964 trackless tram will shuttle between the CFF train station (bus line 21 stop) and the Beaulieu-Jomini stop, in front of the Collection de l’Art Brut.
sunday 24 november 2013
sunday 15 december 2013
sunday 26 january 2014
sunday 16 february 2014
sunday 23 march2014
sunday 27 april 2014

Gare CFF - direction Beaulieu-Jomini: every 20 et 50
Beaulieu-Jomini - direction Gare CFF: every 05 et 35


The exhibition Vehicles is not accessible to people with reduced mobility.