Karl Gunnar Vougt Pontus Hultén (21 June 1924 – 26 October 2006) was a Swedish art collector and museum director. Pontus Hultén is regarded as one of the most distinguished museum professionals of the twentieth century.
He studied Art History in Copenhagen and Stockholm with a dissertation on Vermeer and Spinoza. Director of the Moderna Museet in Stockholm (1957-72), one of the most vibrant art institutions in the 1960s, Hultén curated a series of pioneering thematic as well as monographic exhibitions that promoted the museum as an elastic and open space. This concept of the open museum led him to curate interdisciplinary exhibitions, especially at the Centre Pompidou, where he was appointed Director (1973-81). Hultén proned the integration of art, literature, film, science, theater and music within what he called a ‘museum without walls’ embracing concerts, talks, debates, screenings etc. His use of transparent structures for display created a more direct confrontation between people and works. Through large-scale survey exhibitions, Hultén wanted to make shows both complex and accessible for a wide audience. Artistic Director of the Palazzo Grassi in Venice (1984-90) and Director of the Kunst-und Austellungshalle der BDR in Bonn (1990) and the Museum Jean Tinguely in Basel (1995), in 1985 Hultén also created along with Daniel Buren, Serge Fauchereau and Sarkis, an ambitous laboratory for interdisciplinary knowledge, the Institut des Hautes Études en Arts Plastiques in Paris. (source)
- Anna Tellgren (ed.), Pontus Hultén and Moderna Museet: The Formative Years, forew. Daniel Birnbaum, Stockholm: Moderna Museet, and London: Koenig Books, 2017, 192 pp. Texts by Patrik Andersson, Annika Gunnarsson, Ylva Hillström, Pontus Hultén, et al. TOC & Andersson's essay.   (English)
- Pontus Hultén och Moderna Museet: de formativa åren, Stockholm: Moderna Museet, and London: Koenig Books, 2017, 192 pp.  (Swedish)
- See also
- The Machine as Seen at the End of the Mechanical Age, exhibition curated by Hultén at MoMA, New York, 1968.