A museum open to the challenges of our society
MEG is a museum that looks at global societal and environmental issues. Issues such as decolonization, collaborative processes and sustainability form the core of its vision. In Switzerland as elsewhere, colonial legacies are contested, unfair trade is criticized, racism and exclusion are denounced. In response to these movements, the notions of partnership, exchange, collaboration and co-construction are promoted within the Museum in a spirit of mutual respect and trust.
Its collections, composed of more than 75,000 objects, 200,000 books and documents (iconographic, holographic, audiovisual and sound) connect MEG with the bearers of cultures from the five continents.
Since 2014, MEG has been housed in a remarkable contemporary building - a symbol of its audacity and singularity - which has become an architectural landmark in Geneva. The Museum, its Library, its Café and its Landscaped Garden constitute spaces of social, cultural and intergenerational mix within the Plainpalais neighborhood at the Jonction, in a popular student and residential environment.
As one of the City of Geneva's museums, this flagship municipal institution has notably received numerous awards, including the European Museum of the Year Award (EMYA) in 2017 as well as the Red Dot Design Award and the Multimedia Art Award in 2015, reflecting the qualitative and innovative aspects of its cultural offering.
A look to the future
MEG is a place of debate, exchange and critical reflection in which the arts, sciences, philosophy, culture, history, politics... The Museum proposes reflections that start from a local perspective and open up to realities that are played out on a global scale, such as the question of the Anthropocene. This plurality of fields of exploration makes it possible to address themes related to the main contemporary issues, such as social or racial inequalities or global climate change.
Exhibitions, workshops, concerts, film and lecture series, performances, artist residencies, meetings at the Library, original guided tours and events outside the Museum's walls punctuate its vast program of activities.
The Museum strives to maintain multiple regional and international collaborations with source communities and diasporas. MEG is also developing cooperation with the indigenous peoples of the objects in its collections, in a spirit of mutual respect and knowledge sharing.
The institution has also created a rich and agile ecosystem to promote the diversity of its audiences. Artists, researchers, cultural and educational partners, associations, politicians, visitors, culture bearers and professional networks all contribute to the transformation process formalized in the Strategic Plan 2020-2024.
MEG has begun its fundamental reorientation through two major actions:
- Decolonizing the Museum;
- Commitment to sustainability.
- 7000 m2 total surface of the building
- 2000 m2 of exhibition space in the 2nd basement :
1000 m2 for the permanent exhibition and
1000 m2 for the temporary exhibition
- 250 seats: capacity of the Auditorium
- 75,000 objects (everyday objects, religious objects, crafts, archaeology, contemporary art, etc.)
- 8'000 iconographies
- 21'000 phonograms
- 100'000 photographs
- 72'000 books in the library
- 1037 objects in the permanent exhibition
- 1'500 cultures
- 5 continents
Awards and Distinctions
Offering large-scale exhibitions and a rich and daring program, MEG has had the honor of being awarded since 2011 in various fields.
- MEG has received the international THQSE label (Very High Social-Social-Health and Environmental Quality) at the GOLD level (its highest level of excellence) and is the first THQSE-labeled museum in Europe and the first organization in Switzerland ! This label certifies the social, societal, economic and environmental actions that the MEG has been implementing for several years.
- Swisstainable III is the most demanding level of Switzerland Tourism's sustainability program.
- MEG's CSR approach recognized by the international Responsibility Europe label.
- Music : "Coup de coeur" award - Académie Charles Cros (CD "Archives musicales d'Afrique de l'Ouest. Les années 1070 à Bouaké")
- Scenography : IDA Design Award silver in the category Interior design (scenography of the exhibition "La fabrique des contes")
- Global : European Museum of the Year Award 2017 - European Museum Award 2017 - EMYA, Forum of European Museums/Council of Europe (for the exceptional quality of the cultural offer to the public and for the significant influence in the field of museums, at national and international level). The European Museum of the Year Award is a prestigious award for excellence in European museums.
- Scenography : The German Design Award GOLD 2017 - Design Council (excellence in design - permanent exhibition scenography)
- Cultural Mediation : Innovation Award - HES-SO (Ms. Hind Chammas, student at HEAD-Geneva and intern at MEG received the award for the application "Parlez-vous MEG?")
- Music : "Coup de coeur" award - Académie Charles Cros (CD "Laos. Music of the Khmou")
- Music : Special Mention " Creative exhibition installation " - ICOM/AVICOM (sound installation " Amazonie. Contes sonores ")
- Architecture : Distinction SIA Genève 2016 - SIA (technique and innovation in the service of architecture - new building)
- Architecture :The International Architecture Award 2016 - International Jury (global excellence in architecture and urbanism - new building)
- Scenography : The FX Awards 2016 - International Interior Design Awards (global design excellence - permanent exhibition scenography)
- Music : "Coup de coeur" mention - Académie Charles Cros (CD "Japon. Gagaku. Ono Ensemble")
- Scenography : Red Dot Design Award 2015 - Red Dot (scenography of the permanent exhibition)
- Music : SILVER Multi-Media Art Innovation Award 2015 - ICOM/AVICOM (sound room of the permanent exhibition)
- Music : Mention " Coup de coeur " - Académie Charles Cros (CD " Chine. Tsar Teh-yun (1905-2007), master of the qin ")
- Architecture : Prix de l'immobilier 2014 - Bilan Magazine (architecture of the new building)
- Miscellaneous : Numata Prize for the encouragement of Buddhist culture 2014 (Jérôme Ducor)
- Music : Mention " Coup de coeur " - Académie Charles Cros ( CD " Kenya. The obokano, lyre of the Gusii ")
- Communication : Grand Prix Möbius Multimedia (MEG website)
- Communication : Prix FER - Fédération des entreprises romandes (best communication campaign - reopening of the new MEG building)