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ADDED ON: 04/25/2021

LGBT pioneer’s spectacular painting returns to Monte Verità

4/25/21 | Swissinfo

After a lengthy restoration, visitors can once again admire the 26-metre circular painting Il Chiaro Mondo dei Beati [The clear world of the blessed] by Estonian artist and LGBT pioneer Elisàr von Kupffer (1872-1932) at the Monte Verità museum complex near Ascona, in southern Switzerland. The polyptych depicts 84 male nude figures relaxing in idyllic scenery. It was produced in the region between 1920–1939 by Elisàr von Kupffer, a painter, poet, historian and playwright from Riga, Estonia, who has over the decades become an LGBT icon. It was rediscovered by legendary art historian and curator Harald Szeemann in the late 1970s, and has been renovated several times. Today, it sits in the Elisarion Pavilion on Monte Verità, the hill that overlooks the resort of Ascona on Lake Maggiore. The verdant hill in Italian-speaking Switzerland has always had a unique pulling power. In the early 20th century it became known as an alternative vegetarian colony, attracting artists, anarchists and intellectuals from around Europe. A small art centre was built on the Ascona hill in the early 1920s; later it became a hotel and seminar centre. Today, Monte Verità is a modern congress and cultural centre spread over seven hectares, run by a foundation of the same name.

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