Since the Collection Lambert took up residence at the Hôtel de Caumont in Avignon in 2000, it had been our dream to exhibit at the Villa Médicis in Rome. This honourable project became a reality when Richard Peduzzi, director of the Académie de France in Rome, met the art dealer and collector Yvon Lambert. Although everyone dreams of one day exhibiting at the Villa Médicis, this show demonstrates that in this case the dream was the result of much careful thought, and that it made sense to present masterpieces from the Lambert Collection in one of Rome’s finest palazzi.
The Lambert Collection show will demonstrate that the supposed break between contemporary and classical art is now totally irrelevant. Yvon Lambert’s artistic choices resonate with classical culture: Virgil, Cicero, Heliogabalus, Dante, Goethe and Stendhal on the one hand, Poussin, Caravaggio, Corot, Uccello, Delacroix and Bernini on the other, all influence the paths followed by the collection, from its earliest acquisitions in the 1960s to those that are still being made today.
The works by 40 artists featured in the exhibition entitled ‘Le Grand Tour’, a reference to journeys to Italy lasting several months that intellectuals undertook from the seventeenth century onwards, reflect the collector’s personal fascination for Rome and its history.
Miquel Barceló, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jean-Charles Blais, Marcel Broodthaers, Christian Boltanski, Francesco Clemente, François-Xavier Courrèges, Nan Goldin, Douglas Gordon, Jenny Holzer, Roni Horn, On Kawara, Anselm Kiefer, Jannis Kounellis, Bertrand Lavier, Louise Lawler, Claude Lévêque, Sol LeWitt, Christian Marclay, Brice Marden, Gordon Matta-Clark, Rei Naito, Giulio Paolini, Bruno Peinado, Charles Sandison, Julian Schnabel, Andres Serrano, Niele Toroni, Cy Twombly, Francesco Vezzoli.