In the 17th century, Lieutenant Baillival (Deputy Reeve) Gaudard brought together the north-eastern and western portions of the current building and added the spire that is such a local landmark. Gaudard also harmonised the look of the north façade, which was then twice as large as it is now.
In the 19th century, Maison Gaudard belonged to the Moravian Brothers, who opened a boarding school for young people there. Between 1837 and 1873, the building housed around fifty pupils and their teachers. After the end of the 19th century, the building was bought by the Canton of Vaud, and remained its property until 1995. It became the seat of various administrative departments and was latterly home to the Police Préfecture. At that time, the City of Lausanne was looking into the possibility of finding a new exhibition space for the Musée des arts décoratifs, which was rather cramped at Avenue Villamont. So the City of Lausanne entered into an exchange with the Canton of Vaud, which granted the Maison Gaudard to the city in return for the Musée Arlaud, on the Place de la Riponne.
Since 1995, Maison Gaudard has therefore belonged to the City of Lausanne, which began renovation work on the building. The work, to plans by architects Monot + Monot, finished in 2000 and the museum opened in June of that year. At the same time, the museum changed its name to mudac – Museum of Design and Contemporary Applied Arts.
Looking ahead to 2020, mudac will have a new home at Plateforme10, a new arts district, which will open in the same year near Lausanne station.