Geneva

The MEG: Geneva’s Ethnographic Museum

The MEG was recently renovated; the building’s angular roof and diamond-shaped windows stand out next to the more traditional buildings surrounding it as you walk through Plainpalais and the art gallery-filled Rue des Bains.

We were at the MEG the night it re-opened last year, and enjoyed a free Bonga concert! NeedIess to say, I became a big MEG fan that night.

The massive crowd the night of the opening.

The massive crowd the night of the opening.

Until two weeks ago, when F and I went to the MEG on a cloudy Sunday (yes, they’re open on Sundays!), I had not seen the permanent collection. We were in a hurry that Sunday, on a mission to see the collections on display at the various galleries in the area. Eventually we ended up at the Patek Philippe Museum, another great museum well worth a visit.

Happy boy at the museum.

Happy boy at the museum.

Last week I revisited the MEG with a friend and took the time to view all of the objects that are preserved within the glasses cases that line the permanent exhibition, objects from ancient or extinct cultures from all over the world (it can take you anywhere from one to two hours to view the entire collection; it’s not too extensive).

The dark yet illuminated look so characteristic of ethnographic museums prevails throughout.

The dark yet illuminated look so characteristic of ethnographic museums prevails throughout.

They have a great collection of Brazilian feather headdresses and other indigenous accessories. They even have a khipu, which brought me back to my old college course on Latin American civilizations – I recognized it right away and F was impressed (hehe).

I definitely recommend the MEG for a Sunday afternoon when you don’t have any other plans. The permanent collection is free! If you get tired, you can go back to the ground floor and enjoy a coffee or a snack at the small café there. On weekdays, you can go up to the last floor of the building for some quiet study time in their special library.

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