Works of Art Brut are crafted by self-taught artists, non-conformists with a rebellious spirit or those impervious to the collective norms and values. The artists include prisoners, patients in psychiatric hospitals, eccentrics, recluses and outcasts who create without worrying about criticism from the public and other people’s opinions.
Seeking neither recognition nor approbation, they create a world that serves their own purposes. Their works, produced using methods and materials that are often unique, are unaffected by the influences of artistic tradition and use highly singular forms of representation. The notion of Art Brut is founded on both social and aesthetic characteristics.
We owe the invention of the term “Art Brut” , as well as the existence of the museum, to the French painter Jean Dubuffet (1901-1985). In 1971, Dubuffet donated his collection, an exceptional set of some 5,000 pieces, as well as his Art Brut archives to the city of Lausanne. The Collection de l’Art Brut, located in an 18th century château, was opened to the public on 26 February 1976.