Letter from France: February 2017

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March 26: Opening of the Camille Claudel Museum

For the very first time a museum has been dedicated to the famous sculptor Camille Claudel. (1862-1943.) Not only was she Rodin’s student, she was also his mistress and the museum, her home for a few years, will present both her works as well as  sculptures by Rodin, Boucher, Bourdelle and other famous artists of the time.

Nogent-sur-Seine, 10-Aube , Musée Camille Claudel   www.museecamilleclaudel.fr

Until February 26: “Bernard Buffet, retrospective”

This large exhibition is paying tribute to Bernard Buffet known throughout the whole world as a major artist of the 20th Century. In Japan, an entire museum is dedicated to his works whereas in France, his own country, he was considered as a sort of second-class painter, an “easy” painter.            Paris, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris    www.mam.paris.fr

Until March 5: “Frederic Bazille, the Youth of Impressionism”

Frederic Bazille who died at the age of 28 during the Franco-Prussian war of 1870, was a young painter, a close friend of Monet and Renoir, who should have been called a master. Only 60 of his works have been found, but they show how, in less than a few years, he greatly took part in the birth of Impressionism. Paris, Musée d’Orsay     www.musee-orsay.fr

Until March 6: “Henri Matisse, the internal lab”

Henri Matisse (1869-1954) was a prolific painter and this exhibition shows how drawing took a central but less known part in his work. Numerous drawings he made all life long are displayed in chronological order alongside paintings and sculptures. Lyon, 69-Rhone  Musée des Beaux Arts       www.mba-lyon.fr

Until March 7: “Inside the Wardrobe of the Empress Josephine”

Among the fifty woman costumes of the First Empire that are rarely presented to the public due to their extreme fragility, many of them belong to the Empress Josephine and her daughter Hortense, and they are displayed in the very place where they both lived. Rueil-Malmaison, 92-Hauts de Seine: Château de Malmaison      www.chateau-malmaison.fr

Until March 27: “Kollektia! Contemporary Art in USSR and Russia, 1950-2000”

This exhibition unveils the extraordinary donation of over 250 Soviet and Russian contemporary art works offered to the Centre Pompidou by the Vladimir Potanin Foundation, private collectors and artists. These works show a large panorama of the creativity of Russian artists in the second half of the 20th century. Paris, Centre Pompidou   www.centrepompidou.fr

Until April 2: “From Jordan river to Congo, Art and Christianity in Central Africa”

For the first time a large exhibition is dedicated to the influence of Christianity on art and culture of the tribes of Central Africa between the 15th and the 17th centuries. Paris, Quai Branly Museum       www.quaibranly.fr

Until April 2: “Eclectic, a collection made in the XXI century”

Marc Ladreit de Lacharrière is a wealthy art-lover who, in the last ten years, created a fabulous collection of ancient masterpieces of African Art. But he also mixed that collection with a few antique or contemporary pieces. This collection, a sort of Ideal Collection, shows the humanist vision of a very atypical collector.  Paris, Quai Branly Museum   www.quaibranly.fr

Until April 17: “Hartung and the Lyric Painters”

Hans Hartung (1904-1989) was a prolific artist who decided to avoid the classical rules of painting and invented his own techniques to create a new pictorial language. His creativity influenced many others such as Georges Mathieu, Hantaï, and later Willem de Kooning and Cy Twombly to name just a few. Landerneau, 29-Finistère,  Hélène et Eduard Leclerc’s Foundation. www.fonds-culturel-leclerc.fr

Until April 24: “Cy Twombly”

The first ever retrospective of the work of the American artist Cy Twombly, presenting in chronological order about 140 paintings, sculptures, photos and drawings which show the richness of the work of an artist who throughout his life succeeded in mixing creation and travel.                                        Paris, Centre Pompidou   www.centrepompidou.fr

Until May 21: “Speedy Graphito, an Art-de-Vivre” “

Iconic creator, Speedy Graphito is known as one of the first French Street-Art artist. 7O of his works, displayed in the entire Way Side Villa (the Museum of Touquet-Paris-Plage), shows the fabulous career of this pop artist. Le Touquet-Paris-Plage, 62-Somme      www.letouquet-musee.com

Until May 22:”Kimono, The Ladies’Delight”

For the first time outside Japan, the masterpieces of the famous Matsuzakay -a fashion house founded in 1611 – are displayed at the Guimet Museum. This exhibition shows the evolution of the Kimono from the Edo period (1603-1868) until today and considers its large impact on our contemporary fashion designers such as Saint-Laurent, Jean-Paul Gaultier or John Galliano.  Paris, Guimet Museum      www.guimet.fr

Until May 22: “Valentin de Boulogne, to reinvent Caravaggio”

Valentin de Boulogne (1591-1632) is considered as the most brilliant of the followers of Caravaggio. Although French, he spent all his life in Rome and was soon a famous painter. The Pope commissioned him as did Louis XIV – the Sun King  – whose purchases  are now in the Louvre. This exhibition presents those along with some others belonging to the New York Metropolitan Museum. Paris, The Louvre Museum     www.louvre.fr

Until May 22: “Joseph Koudelka, Exiles”

Joseph Koudelka is a photographer of Czech origin who had to leave his country after the Soviet invasion of Prague. From 1970 to 1980, travelling on the roads of Europe, he  made a series of 75 images that he published with the title “Exiles”. To have a deeper knowledge of his work, 35 of these iconic images are presented with the original notebooks he used at that time to create and organise that series.  Paris, Centre Pompidou   www.centrepompidou.fr

Until May 22: “Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Painting”

For this exceptional exhibition showing the links that connected all the Genre Painting masters in the Netherlands during the third quarter of the seventeenth century, the Louvre Museum has succeeded in gathering together 12 paintings of Vermeer (a third of his known works) with works by other masters as Peter de Hooch, Gabriel Mestu and Jan Steen. Paris, Louvre Museum     www.louvre.fr

Until May 22: “Chefs-d’œuvre of the Leiden Collection, the Century of Rembrandt”

Thomas and Daphné Kaplan have gathered together the most fabulous private collection of paintings by seventeenth century masters from the region of Leiden in the Netherlands. About thirty paintings of the collection are on show, including eleven Rembrandts. Paris, Louvre Museum     www.louvre.fr


Until June 12: “Drawing Everyday Life, Netherlands during the Golden Century”

About one hundred drawings by Van Goyen, Rembrandt, Van Ostrade and a few others, show how these famous painters of the seventeenth century, the Golden age of the Dutch painting, were watching the everyday life of their fellow citizens. This was the golden age of Dutch painting and these drawings, made on the spot or soon after, were the basis of their future masterpieces.  Paris, Louvre Museum     www.louvre.fr


The Great Museum of Perfume of Paris:

A few months ago, the Great Museum of Perfume opened its doors to the public, right in the heart of the Faubourg St Honoré, one of the most fashionable Parisian district. Settled in an elegant 1.400 square meters mansion, the museum offers to learn the history of perfume, to discover the art of conceiving and to work on one’s own olfactory sense. Paris, Le Grand Musée du Parfum    www.grandmuseeduparfum.fr

Lascaux IV is now opened

In Montignac-Lascaux the  new “Centre International de l’Art Pariétal” displays a full-scale copy of the original cave which is permanently closed to the public. Over 400.000 visitors are expected next year and even if advance booking on Internet is high, everydaysome of the tickets will be sold on the spot. Montignac-Lascaux, 14-Dordogne    www.reserver.lascaux.fr/en/todo

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