The exhibition is conceived as a survey, focusing on the highly productive period before the First World War. Over 140 works with sculptures and paintings and decorative objects. Paintings by contemporaries such as Gauguin, Denis and Vuillard.

From painter to sculptor


CHF 18.–/14.– (concessions and groups) inclusive Collection. Free admission for members, children and young people under the age of 17.


Note for groups

We look forward to welcoming you to the Kunsthaus. For organizational reasons, prior registration is required. 44 253 84 84

Where is the exhibition located?

In the Chipperfield Building, 2nd floor!

Aristide Maillol (1861–1944) is the most important French sculptor of the early modern era after Auguste Rodin. A major and influential figure who is both modern and timeless, Maillol created sensual art that embodies the values of clarity and balance of forms, making him a consummate artist of the classical tradition.

The exhibition brings together over 140 works, with both sculptures – including all the artist’s key works – and paintings: Maillol began his career as a painter, producing canvases of great quality that are still little known outside France. Also on display are decorative objects, tapestries designed by Maillol, and enchanting drawings. The presentation additionally incorporates paintings by contemporaries such as Paul Gauguin, Maurice Denis and Édouard Vuillard, revealing the closeness of Maillol’s relationship to them.

Exhibition view, Photo © Franca Candrian, Kunsthaus Zürich
Aristide Maillol, Femme accroupie, 1911 (model), Paris, Fondation Dina Vierny – musée Maillol, photo © J.-A. Brunelle
Aristide Maillol, Léda, 1901–1902, Private collection, photo © J.-L. Losi
Exhibition view, Photo © Franca Candrian, Kunsthaus Zürich
Maillol_ Le-cycliste.jpg
Aristide Maillol, Le Cycliste, 1907–1908, Kunstmuseum Basel, purchase 1938, Photo © Kunstmuseum Basel
Aristide Maillol, La Vague, also known as Femme à la vague or La Baigneuse, 1896, Fire screen, needlepoint, probably executed by Clotilde Maillol, Paris, Fondation Dina Vierny - musée Maillol, photo © J.-A. Brunelle
Aristide Maillol, Danseuse, around 1895, Paris, musée d’Orsay, © RMN Grand-Palais (musée d’Orsay) / Hervé Lewandowski
Exhibition view, Photo © Franca Candrian, Kunsthaus Zürich
Aristide Maillol, L’Enfant couronné, ca. 1890–1892, Fondation Dina Vierny - musée Maillol, photo © J.-A. Brunelle
Aristide Maillol and André Metthey (ceramist), Léda, ca. 1907, Paris, collection Larock-Granoff, photo © Collection Marc et Pierre Larock
Exhibition view, Photo © Franca Candrian, Kunsthaus Zürich

Public guided tour

  • German: Saturdays 8/22 Oct, 5/19 Nov, 3/17 Dec, 7/21 Jan 2023 at 11 a.m.
  • French: Sunday 30 Oct at 2 p.m.
  • Costs: Exhibition Ticket + CHF 6.– / CHF 4.– (concessions and members)
  • Registration via Agenda!

Private guided tour

We will be happy to organize a tour tailored to the needs of your group.

  • Max. 20 people
  • German, English, French, Italian
  • CHF 190.– (German) / CHF 220.– (other languages) + Admission Ticket (group tarif)
  • Duration: 1 hour

The great sculptor of the female figure

Alongside Rodin’s unbridled sculpture, imbued with the brilliantly emotional energy that enabled him to reinvent the genre for France and the 19th century in general, Maillol’s works appear more restrained and classical. Yet Maillol’s modernity lies in the striking way his figures are integrated into clear overall forms that – although it is not immediately apparent – are often based on a geometrical analysis of the body, and specifically the female form. While Rodin frequently created male figures, couples and entire groups of figures of both sexes as well, the ‘Cézanne of sculpture’, as Maillol is often referred to, remained the great sculptor of the (mostly unclothed) female figure. He masterfully condensed the female nude, his lifelong subject, ultimately endowing it with a powerful monumentality. While the early sculptures still fitted perfectly into the interiors painted by the Nabis and the spirit of that progressive group of artists, by the end of his career Maillol stands alone, a kind of Titan from another age.

The exhibition will be shown in the Chipperfield building and is organized by the Musées d’Orsay et de l’Orangerie, Paris, the Kunsthaus Zürich and La Piscine – Musée d’art et d’industrie André Diligent, Roubaix, with the exceptional partnership of the Fondation Dina Vierny – Musée Maillol.


Maillol. A different view

The Kunsthaus came up with idea of an extra publication, to accompany the Zurich presentation of an exhibition that was originally conceived at the Musée d’Orsay. In it, ‘Vénus au collier’, a life-size female nude by Maillol from the Kunsthaus Collection, is sent on a journey through the museum’s galleries, encountering works by female artists along the way, ranging from the figural to the abstract, and from neoclassical through modern to contemporary. Maillol’s thematically traditional depiction of woman is thus contrasted with the artistic work of women, to reconsider his oeuvre from a modern-day perspective.

Publication G / E CHF 21.– available at the Chipperfield-Shop and online

Ill: Aristide Maillol, La Nuit, 1909, Paris, Fondation Dina Vierny - musée Maillol, photo © J.-L. Losi