The building windows show the clear separation of the building into 3 spaces: the mudac at the upper level, the entrance, ticket office and bookstore at the ground level and Photo Elysée at the lower floor. Each of the two museums has the exact same exhibition space of 1500 square meters. The upper volume almost seems to float above the windows and indeed, the number of contact points is very limited.
The history of the mudac goes back to the Musée des arts décoratifs de La Ville de Lausanne, founded in 1967. It changed its name to mudac in 2000.
Photo Elysée, previously named Musée de l'Elysée, was founded in 1985 by Charles-Henri Favrod. Its collection contains more than 200000 photography prints.