segunda-feira, 21 de maio de 2012
Autómatos de Jaquet Droz em exposição até final de Setembro na Suíça
Três exposições, em três museus da Suíça, dedicados à figura de Pierre Jaquet-Droz e do seu colaborador e filho adoptivo Jean Frédéric Leschot. No Museu de Arte e História de Neuchâtel, no Museu Internacional de Relojoaria de La Chaux-de-Fonds e no Museu de Relojoaria de Château des Monts, em Le Locle. Patentes até 30 de Setembro.
Lido no Fédération Horlgère:
Hosted by three sites, the exhibition dedicated to the Jaquet-Droz team and their collaborator Leschot opened its doors on 29 April this year. Surprises and discoveries aplenty in store! Announced last November, the exhibition «Automates & Merveilles» featuring the famous androids of Jaquet-Droz father and son and their collaborator Jean-Frédéric Leschot opened its doors almost a month ago. Who are Jaquet-Droz and Leschot? How did they set up their business? How did they conquer the world from La Chaux-de-Fonds, and later from Geneva, London and Paris? Where do automata fit into the assortment of luxury objects they produced? What is the link between these automata and the robots of today and of the future?
These are just some of the questions raised at the three exhibition sites, namely the Museum of Art and History of Neuchâtel, the International Museum of Watchmaking of La Chaux-de-Fonds and the Château des Monts Museum in Le Locle.
Each of these presentations leads the visitor from the Enlightenment to the present day. Automata are often designed as objects whose purpose is to present or demonstrate, in order to generate surprise, wonder and astonishment. Mysterious clocks, perpetual motion mechanisms, «celestial» automata such as planetary clocks and timepieces with complex astronomical indications exert a similar appeal. They form a body of objects demonstrating that the ability of 18th century engineers and watchmakers to invent and construct such instruments persists to this day.
From the second half of the 18th century, the miniaturisation of mechanical and musical movements gave rise to a new industry. Pierre Jaquet-Droz and his son Henri-Louis occupy a place of honour in this context. At the dawn of the 19th century, such luxury objects were held in the same esteem as jewels. These miniature masterpieces made of gold, enamel, pearls and precious stones were widely circulated in Europe and the East.
The three most famous Jaquet-Droz and Leschot androids are the Writer, the Draughtsman and the Musician. Each has found its place in one of the three museums that chart the course of the famous designers of automata according to different themes. The Museum of Art and History of Neuchâtel offers an understated and elegant presentation, in three languages, that retraces the history of Jaquet-Droz and their collaborators in relation to the family business and the range of luxury timepieces and automata it produced. Focused on the automaton called «The Writer», the exhibition features exceptional pieces loaned from public and private collections, interactive devices and exciting multimedia installations. Visitors can discover the mechanical marvels of Jaquet-Droz and their contemporaries as well as modern-day robots, including recent work by the famous Swiss automaton-maker François Junod. An interest-packed programme including targeted guided tours, demonstrations of automata, films, talks and workshops is offered to adults and children alike.
Exploring the theme of «Marvellous Movements… Mechanical Wonders», visitors to the International Museum of Watchmaking of La Chaux-de-Fonds will discover automata often designed as objects whose purpose is to present or demonstrate, in order to surprise, astonish and create a sense of wonder among the public. The flagship piece in this exhibition is the «Musician» by Henri-Louis Jaquet-Droz, which underpins one of the highlights of the theme, automated musical production, represented by musical boxes and automata, barrel organs, mechanical musical instruments and all manner of chiming clocks and bells. The Musician is presented inside a miniature theatre featuring other automata, old and new. Visitors can therefore take a seat and quietly admire the operation of these fascinating and compelling objects. Adding to the wonder and intrigue, mysterious clocks, perpetual motion mechanisms, «celestial» automata such as planetary clocks and timepieces with complex astronomical indications are also presented and constitute another of the exhibition’s highlights. The emblem of the key - an indispensable part of an automaton – guides the public through 34 waypoints from the museum’s entrance to the monumental chiming clock in its park.
Entitled «Masterpieces of Luxury and Miniaturisation», the exhibition at the Château des Monts Museum gives pride of place to the «Draughtsman» and focuses on the miniaturisation of mechanisms, showing the sumptuous detail of their decorations. The constant effort to miniaturise mechanisms allowed watchmakers to incorporate singing birds, musical boxes or animated scenes populated with characters in all kinds of objects (watches, bracelets, walking stick pommels, pistols, cages and even snuffboxes). They also excelled in the creation of android automata or small mechanical animals. At the turn of the 19th century such luxury objects, embellished by scenes featuring automata and music, were held in the same esteem as jewels. These miniature masterpieces made of gold, enamel, pearls and precious stones, decorated with chased or cloisonné enamel, were widely circulated in Europe and the East.
The three exhibitions are open until 30 September this year from Tuesday to Sunday, 11am to 6pm. In addition, comprehensive information concerning special opening times, demonstration times of automata and other practical information can be found on the website: www.automatesetmerveilles.ch. To make it easier to visit all three sites, a CFF ticket is available combining entrance to the museums with the cost of travel by train and bus.