Contents and History
The Stiftung Sammlung Kamm (Kamm Collection Foundation) based in Zug was founded in 1998 by the Kamm family. The Foundation owns what is presumably the most important collection of Viennese Modern Movement artworks in Europe outside of Austria. It encompasses workgroups by Herbert Boeckl, Richard Gerstl, Josef Hoffmann, Gustav Klimt, Oskar Kokoschka, Alfred Kubin, Koloman Moser, Egon Schiele and Fritz Wotruba, while moreover covering various areas of European modern art: Expressionism, Cubism, Bauhaus.
The former private collection of Fritz Kamm (1897–1967) and Editha Kamm-Ehrbar (1901–1980) was assembled primarily in the 1950s and '60s. The Austrian sculptor Fritz Wotruba had made the couple's acquaintance during his wartime exile in Zug and later advised them on acquisitions for their collection. For Fritz Kamm he directed the Galerie Würthle in Vienna from 1953 to 1965, realizing a pioneering exhibition programme there in the area of classical modern and contemporary art; it is in that programme that the Kamm collection has its origins for the most part. The second generation, Christa Kamm, Peter Kamm (1935–2008) and his wife Christine Kamm-Kyburz, supplemented the collection primarily in the area of applied art. In 1998, the Kamm family founded the Stiftung Sammlung Kamm and bequeathed its holdings to the Kunsthaus Zug in the form of a permanent loan. Since that time, it has been on view at the Kunsthaus regularly in changing presentations of various scopes. Works from the collection are also placed on loan to other institutions in Switzerland and abroad for exhibition purposes. In 2009, Christa Kamm and Christine Kamm-Kyburz donated a further 54 works to the Stiftung Sammlung Kamm, bringing the holdings up to the present 409 works.
In the collection catalogue published on the occasion of the initial presentation at the Kunsthaus Zug in 1998, founders Christa Kamm, Christine Kamm-Kyburz and the late Peter Kamm wrote: "The close friendship which formed between the Kamm family and the Wotrubas during World War II triggered a stimulating and pleasurable preoccupation with art. Over the course of the decades, this preoccupation led to a collection on view today for the first time – grouped as an exhibition – at the Kunsthaus Zug. This presentation, which was never planned either by Fritz and Editha Kamm nor by ourselves, planted within us the idea and wish to preserve in its essence the collection founded by our parents and carried on and expanded by ourselves, incorporate it into a foundation and make it accessible to the public at the Kunsthaus Zug. For we believe that in Zug – and thanks to Zug – something came into being which should belong to Zug. We were encouraged in our decision by the successful efforts made over the course of several decades by the [city's art society] Zuger Kunstgesellschaft and the Stiftung der Freunde Kunsthaus Zug [Foundation of Friends of Kunsthaus Zug], as well as on private initiative and with the aid of the public to establish a museum with the aim of presenting regional artistic activity in conjunction with national and international art. If we take time to think about the abiding values that surround us, we recognize that they are seldom material assets, but rather culture, art, the immaterial. In this sense, art and culture are indispensable as life's trailblazers, and can serve as an orientation for society, economy and politics. The Kunsthaus collection, now enriched by our foundation, will provide the Zug public with opportunities for the in-depth exploration of art, and thus open a window to the world on the cultural level as well."
The Foundation Purpose
The purpose of the foundation is to domicile the artworks and documents from the Kamm collection dedicated to it as endowment capital at the Kunsthaus Zug in the form of a loan, to preserve them and make them accessible to the public. At least a representative selection from the collection is to be on permanent view at the Kunsthaus Zug. The collection or parts thereof can be placed at the disposal of museums in Switzerland and abroad temporarily for short-term exhibitions.
The Foundation Council
Alexander Jolles (President)
Dr. Matthias Haldemann (Vice-President)
Dr. Christine Kamm-Kyburz
Dr. Jürg Scheuzger