Plakat der Ausstellung 'Wunderbar widersprüchlich', National Landesmuseum Zürich.

Switzerland is often described as a perfect country: breath-taking scenery, sparkling clean cities and highly efficient infrastructure. The Swiss only know about those things from the news. Political upheavals happen elsewhere, and humanitarian involvement and “good deeds” are part of Switzerland’s self-image. A little paradise in the middle of Europe.

On closer inspection, contradictions emerge. So what is it, an idyllic paradise, or a staid backwater of provincial attitudes? A nation open to the world and all it holds, or a stronghold of conservativism?

This question isn’t so easy to answer. It depends not only on the perspective but also on who’s answering. In addition, there are often a number of facets that may be diametrically opposed. Switzerland is full of bewildering contrasts.

The exhibition Wunderbar widersprüchlich  (Amazingly ambivalent) examines some of the views held by insiders, and those on the outside, and uncovers contradictory aspects of Switzerland. It aims to encourage visitors to self-reflect and their relationship with Switzerland.