8 March - 23 April 2022

Curated by
  • Angela Windholz
  • Elisabetta Zonca

Bibliographic showcase
  • Silvio Bindella

  • Alberto Canepa

The restoration and digitisation of the photographs in the Bircher collection were carried out with the support of Memoriav

Ricordi d’Egitto.
Un raro fondo fotografico
del mercante (d’arte)
André Bircher a Il Cairo

Memories of Egypt.
A Rare Photographic Collection
of (art) dealer
André Bircher in Cairo

The 91 photographs that make up the Bircher Collection are a particularly interesting collection, as they were collected between the 1860s and 1880s by one of the leading figures of the large group of Swiss traders in Africa, André Bircher from Küttingen in Canton Aargau. The historical views of the Near East, of the cities, monuments and landscapes of Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Tunisia and Palestine were most likely bought by Bircher, one of the largest dealers in ancient art in Cairo, directly from the photographers themselves. The rare and fragile albumen prints on display here are all works by well-known photographers, including Pascal Sébah, Wilhelm Hammerschmidt, Antonio Beato, Felix Bonfils, the Zangaki Brothers and Gabriel Lékégian, whose biographies are still little known to the general public.

» full description
The SalottoTurconi offers a series of lectures, presentations and encounters based on the collections of the Academy Library and is intended to be an informal moment of sharing, devoted to free and open debate, focused on dialogue and discussion.
The salotto welcomes a wide variety of guests with their stories and ideas. It offers a moment in which discourses and figures of thought connect, cross and reject each other.
The salotto knows no protocol, no seating arrangements, no predetermined outcomes.