MUSEC is a museum of art and anthropology: its mission is to investigate the different forms of human creativity, with a vision that can be summed up in the formula 'art without borders'. It is frequented by an audience of art enthusiasts and people who are curious and eager to extend their knowledge of world cultures.
MUSEC exhibitions are original projects, the result of research conducted by the staff in collaboration with experts and international partners, as are its catalogues and other publications. The exhibitions mainly highlight works from the permanent collections, with particular emphasis on new acquisitions. Starting with the original nucleus of 600 works from the Brignoni donation, in fact, the Museum's collections continue to be enriched, thanks mainly to bequests, donations and deposits from private collectors, with whom the Museum maintains privileged relations. Today, the Museum's deposits contain over 20,000 works. Among the most prestigious, in addition to the Brignoni Collection, is the collection of 10,000 hand-coloured photographs of Japan from the late 19th century, to which several exhibitions have already been dedicated, in Switzerland and abroad. The MUSEC exhibitions are regularly accompanied by in-depth, informative and entertaining meetings for different audiences.
A library of over 20,000 volumes and specialist journals supports ongoing research. Topics include ethnic and oriental arts, Primitivism in 20th century art, the photography of Exoticism, the anthropology of art, museum organisation and management, and the art market. The MUSEC is also active in the field of youth training, with internships for undergraduates and recent graduates, civil service assignments, research projects financed by scholarships donated by partners, lectures and workshops integrated with academic training programmes.