Our collections include painting, sculpture, photography, film, costumes and objects associated with dance and theatre around the world, for example unique works by Fernand Léger, Giorgio de Chirico, Francis Picabia, Pierre Bonnard and Nils Dardel made for the Swedish Ballet in Paris 1920–25; the Taglioni Collection of 19th century engravings; set and costume designs by Alexandre Benois, Leon Bakst, Isaac Grünewald, Wilhelm Kåge, Lennart Rodhe and others; and Belle Époque dance posters.
The European Collection mainly consists of Ballets Russes costumes and costumes from the Swedish Ballet and from the Cullberg Ballet.
The late 18th century Asian Collection consists of masks, costumes, shadow puppets and musical instruments from India, Indonesia, Japan, China, Thailand and Tibet.
The important African Collection consists of mainly 20th century masks, most of them from Burkina Faso, Mali, Nigeria and Congo.
We also own a collection of North American Katchina dolls.
The Swedish Ballet
The avant-garde Swedish Ballet – the Ballets Suédois – was based in Paris between 1920 and 1925 where they performed experimental ballets, often by combining different art forms in new ways. The company’s founder, Rolf de Maré, engaged some of the most ground-breaking artists at the time. The Ballets Suédois is well-represented by about 450 designs at Dansmuseet.
Ballets Russes – The Russian Ballet
It is now over a hundred years ago since the legendary Russian Ballet – the Ballets Russes – was launched in Paris, thereby laying the foundations for 20th century ballet. Choreographers, artists and composers led by Serge Diaghilev together created crossover performances for all the senses. Sets and costumes were as evocative as the dance and the music. Dansmuseet owns one of the world’s finest and largest collections of Ballets Russes costumes.