“This is excellent news for culture,” said Bernard Fibicher, director of the Cantonal Museum of Fine Arts in Lausanne, interviewed on Wednesday by Keystone-ATS after the Federal Council’s announcement. On the other hand, “it is extremely unfortunate for theaters, cinemas, our colleagues who still have to keep their establishments closed.”
“But that already makes an opening for the world of culture. And for people who are interested in it, there will at least be something to do,” he added. Mr Fibicher is now suspended on confirmation of the Federal Council’s decision next week after consulting the cantons.
“The association of Swiss museums has carried out a great lobbying work in Bern as cultural institutions of the cantons of Basel and Geneva, he stressed.“ We also took part in the action this weekend ‘No culture, no future ‘, which it seems has been heard. “
The physical encounters with the works in person represent a need, he continued. The MCBA is ready with two exhibitions that should have started already last week.
There is also a “silver lining” in the fact that cultural events with an audience will again be made possible in a second opening stage before Easter, even in a narrowly limited setting.
Plonk and Replonk Museum
In the Jura, the Plonk and Replonk Museum, located in a small 70m2 apartment, is eager to reopen. “We want and need the museum to reopen,” explains Elisabeth Baume Schneider, president of the Pire association, after having been practically closed non-stop since spring 2020.
“We all now need culture to come out of ourselves and experience an emotional adventure, no matter how big the museum is,” she continued. All the more in self-mockery as Plonk and Replonk do. “I think it would be good to laugh at yourself by projecting yourself into a universe a little disconnected from reality”.
Bébert, one of the two brothers of Plonk and Replonk – now based in Portugal, “because after 55 winters spent in the Jura, I’ve had enough of the snow” – is happy that the museums can reopen. But he considers it absurd that they had to close: “it is not after all in museums that there were clusters”. He also recalled Spain’s “courageous” choice not to complete culture.
Support for the relaunch of films requested
On the cinema side, Claude Ruey, president of ProCinéma, expected the decisions announced Wednesday by the government, that is to say a possible opening staggered from April 1 for cinemas of the 7th art. On the other hand, cinema circles do not want “no limit of 50 people” without taking into account the capacity of the rooms.
“We want a gauge of 50% of the capacity of the room: 50 people for the Houdini in Zurich or 50 for the Capitol in Lausanne, it’s not the same thing,” he continued. The first has six rooms with 32 to 54 seats; the second, which must be renovated, has more than 800 places.
When theaters reopen, ProCinéma is still asking the Federal Office of Culture for help with relaunching Swiss films, with a plan called “Restart”. “We discussed this yesterday with Bern”.
For his part, Stéphane Morey, secretary general of the French-speaking association of audiovisual producers (Aropa), recalls that film shoots did not have to stop, provided that strict health measures were applied. “We had two or three border problems, but it’s still quite manageable.”
Also a member of the Romande Culture Taskforce, he considers it positive that Bern is giving reopening prospects for cinemas and theaters. Even if the latter “suffer from a certain injustice compared to the stores, in particular those, which would have shows ready to be shown such as the Sévelin 36 Theater in Lausanne and its festival ‘Le Printemps de Sévelin'”.
For cinemas, you need time to program – “and it doesn’t happen in 10 days”. Perhaps the Visions du Réel documentary film festival could take place.
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