The main entrance of the Olympic Museum (2014).
|Established||23 June 1993|
The Olympic Museum (French: Musée olympique) in Lausanne, Switzerland houses permanent and temporary exhibits relating to sport and the Olympic movement. With more than 10,000 pieces, the museum is the largest archive of Olympic Games in the world and one of Lausanne's prime tourist site draws attracting more than 250,000 visitors each year.
The Olympic Museum and the Olympic Park (sculpture garden between the museum and the Lake Léman) are located at Ouchy. The headquarters of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) are located at Vidy (to the west of Ouchy).
The museum was founded on 23 June 1993, on the initiative of then-President of the IOC Juan Antonio Samaranch. Mexican architect Pedro Ramírez Vázquez, an International Olympic Committee member, and Jean-Pierre Cahen, were in charge of the project. The museum was named the European Museum of the Year in 1995.
After 23 months of renovation, the Olympic Museum opened again on 21 December 2013. During the transformations of the building (2012-2013), a temporary exhibition was set up in a boat (Helvétie) of the CGN, in front of the Olympic Park.
With the renovation, the surface of the museum increased from 2000 m2 (in 2011) to 3000 m2 (in 2013) .
The Museum contains highly interactive and informative exhibits. It is organized into three major themes on three separate floors: The Olympic World, The Olympic Games and The Olympic Spirit. A visit begins on the third floor, where “The Olympic World” informs the visitor of the history of the ancient Games and the rebirth of the modern Games. Highlights include a display of the various torches, as well as a video documenting major moments in the Opening Ceremony history.
The second floor focuses on “The Olympic Games”. Sporting equipment for a variety of sports are on display and visitors are introduced to the Youth Olympic Games and the Paralympic Games. More than 1,000 video clips of Olympic Games events and athletes are searchable at individual viewing stations.
The final part of the permanent exhibit covers “The Olympic Spirit” where visitors feel a part of an Olympic Village and can test their balance, agility and mental skills with interactive exercises. Olympic medals are also on display.
The renovated museum also includes temporary exhibit space, where the museum regularly hosts traveling exhibits.
The Olympic Museum is surrounded by a park containing numerous works of art on a sporting theme. Among the most notable works of art in the museum's permanent collection are the French sculptors Auguste Rodin's The American Athlete and Niki de Saint Phalle's Les Footballeurs, the Luxembourgish sculptor Lucien Wercollier's tribute to the pole vault Altius, the Colombian sculptor Fernando Botero's Jeune Fille a la Balle and a kinetic art sculpture by the Swiss sculptor Jean Tinguely which combines a hockey stick, a boar's head and a motorbike wheel.
From the shores of Lake Léman
Statue in front of the museum, on the shore of Lake Léman
During the transformations of the building (until December 2013), a temporary exhibition is set up in this CGN boat, in front of the Olympic Park
Cyclistes, sculpture by Gabor Mihaly
Notes and references
- Natalie Leung (2008-03-13). "Free Olympics Archives Exhibit at Tap Seac Pavilion". Macau Daily Times. Retrieved 2008-03-21.
- Tom Wright (2005-05-02). "Literary Heyday Lingers in Lausanne". International Herald Tribune. Retrieved 2008-03-21.
- "Olympic Museum Lausanne". Swiss News. 2002-08-01. Retrieved 2008-03-21.
- "Remodelled Olympic Museum sports new look". The Local: Switzerland's News in English. December 11, 2013.
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