Letter from France: March 2012

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

Whether you’re a novice or seasoned traveller, France will steal your heart. Each month, Frederic – our French correspondent – gives us the low-down on what to see and do across the channel

March 2012: a selection of exhibitions and new cultural events

Ending soon

Until March 31: La Fabrique Sonore, Pommery Experiment#9
A presentation inside the spectacular ancient chalk pits – now used as champagne cellars- of the works of 30 international artists working on various sound nuances, from noise to music.
Reims, Marne-51, Domaine Pommery

Until April 1: Capturing the model: 300 Rodin Drawings
An exhibition of a few series of drawings of women’s bodies, quite unknown works of the worldwide known sculptor, Auguste Rodin.
Paris, Musée Rodin

Until April 2: Danser sa Vie

An exhibition of around 450 art works, paintings, drawings, choreographies, from the1900s until today. It is dedicated to discover how the visual arts and dance share the same passion for bodies in movement. The title of this exhibition is a tribute to Isadora Duncan, the famous dancer, who said that her art was only “to dance her life”.
Paris, Centre Pompidou

Running now

Until April 16: New Frontier, Thomas Cole
An exhibition devoted to Thomas Cole, an American painter, 1801-1848, renowned for his large landscape works, with the presentation of five masterpieces including Landscape with figures: A scene from the “Last of the Mohicans”. This is the first step of a multi-annual partnership between The Louvre and three main American museums, called New Frontier – American Art Enters the Louvre.
Paris, Musée du Louvre

Until April 29: Ai Weiwei – Interlacing

The first major exhibition of the Chinese conceptual artist, showing photographs and videos that offer a critical overview of the everyday social realities in a urban setting mainly in China. These works caused him to be sent to prison in April, 2011. He is now on bail in Beijing.
Paris, Musée du Jeu de Paume

Until April 29: Berenice Abbott
A retrospective of the works of the succesful photographer Berenice Abbott (1898-1991), presenting 140 vintage prints including portraits of famous artists in Paris in the 1920s, images of Changing New York ( her project in the 1930’s) and a selection of experimental abstract photos produced for the M.I.T. in the 1950s.
Paris, Musée du Jeu de Paume

Until May 12: Napoleon’s Wars: Louis Francois Lejeune, general and painter
A precious eyewitness account of the main battles of Napoleon through the works of an extremely accurate painter who happened to be a general who fought all over Europe and who later on wrote for posterity his memoirs.
Versailles, Les Yvelines-78, Château de Versailles

Until  May 13: The Rain
Expectation, desire, fear, hate, protection, need… are part of the emotions and feelings released from symbolic or ordinary objects coming from Asia, Africa, Americas and Oceania.
Paris, Musée du Quai Branly

Until May 13: Patagonia, Images of World’s End
A parallel between fiction and reality through various documents, pictures, maps of Patagonia from 16th century to nowadays.
Paris, Musée du Quai Branly

Until June 10: Henri-Edmond Cross and the neo-impressionism
This presentation of the masterpieces of Henri-Edmond Cross, one of the founders of the neo-impressionism movement with Seurat and Signac, is a tribute to the painter’s work on natural light in Provence, and to its influence on Matisse and the Fauvists.
Le Cateau-Cambrésis, Le Nord-59, Musée Matisse

Until June 10: The Mayan jade masks
Seven tombs of Mayan dignitaries and almost all incredible jade masks already found and many others pieces like amazing carved stones and various potteries, are exposed for the first time out of Mexico, highlighting the main last Mexican archaeological discoveries.
Paris, Pinacotheque de Paris

Until June 18: Matisse
The Centre Pompidou presents around 60 works of Matisse displayed in pairs or in short series. The aim is to investigate a very special aspect of the artist’s work who tried all his life long to produce simultaneously the same motif by different techniques.
Paris, Centre Pompidou

Until June 25: Arles, Record of the Rhône, 20 years of underwater excavations

A major archeological event, the bust of Caesar found underwater in 2007 in Arles is shown together with the only other identified statue identified as Julius Caesar from the Museo di Antichi in Turin. Numerous rare Roman artefacts are on display including statues, bronzes, jewels, amphorae, lamps… A jump of two thousand years in the past to the Roman time in Provence.
Paris, Musée du Louvre

Until July 1: Degas and the Nude
An Exhibition devoted to Edgar Degas’ Nudes. Degas the dancers and the famous painter of horses,  worked throughout his life on nudes using all techniques from sculpture, painting, drawing and finally the most important feature of his work, his pastels, a technique in which he is forever, the great master.
Paris, Musée d’Orsay

Until July 8: La berline de Napoleon, the mystery of Waterloo loot
The result of an incredible treasure hunt to bring together all the personal belongings of Emperor Napoleon, that were looted on the night of the defeat at Waterloo and which were  scattered through Europe where they disappeared until recently. That includes all the personal medals of the Emperor, hidden in the cellars of the Moscow Historic Museum until 2000.
Paris, Musée de la Légion d’honneur

Until July 30: Histoire de l’Atelier Brancusi
A reconstitution of the Paris workshop where Brancusi, a famous modern sculptor lived and worked.
Paris, Centre Pompidou

Until July 30: Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Bivouac
An illustration of the current state of the work of the two designers, who last September appeared at the London Design Festival held at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Metz, Moselle-57, Centre Pompidou-Metz.

Until July 15: Artemisia
In the early 17th century Artemisia Gentileschi was one of the very rare women-painters, and was the only one who received celebrity and glory whilst she lived. Thus she was able to live from her own art. This exhibition is a tribute to the perfection of her works and also to the strong willpower she had in a world where women were treated as second class .
Paris, Musée Maillol

Until 10 November 2013: Roulez Carosses!
A loan from the Palace of Versailles, to the museum of St Vaast Abbey in Arras, shows for the first time the best pieces of French royal and imperial horse-drawn carriages along with numerous artefacts belonging to their use, plus a few paintings of important events during which they were used.
Arras, Pas-de-Calais – 59, Musée-Abbaye St Vaast


Jean Cocteau-Collection Severin Wunderman
The largest in the world and a must-to-see collection of the works of Jean Cocteau, given to the town of Menton, by the private collector Severin Wunderman.
Menton, Alpes Maritimes-06, Musée Jean Cocteau

Up coming

April 29: The first gourmet’s walking tour in Chablis vineyards
A few kilometres walking tour through Chablis vineyards will allow everyone to discover some nice landscapes of Burgundy and to appreciate local tasty food and a few different Chablis vine. During the tour five stops are scheduled to offer each time a different course with a glass of Chablis.
Chablis, Yonne-89, info at Chablis Tourism Office:

From March 23 – July 23: The Twilight of the Pharaons, Masterpieces of the last Egyptian Dynasties

The best masterpieces from Pharaonic Egypt during 10 centuries until the last dynasty, the Ptolemaic’s one, display inside the fabulous setting of the town house sheltering the Jacquemart-André Museum.
Paris, Musée Jacquemart-André

From April 5 – July 15: Cima de Conegliano: a master of the Venetian Renaissance
As a master Venetian painter, he was famous already in his time, late 15th and early 16th century, for his perfection in depicting human faces and expressions, as well as in wide-open landscapes with a great accuracy in details and a perfect light. He became a great master in a new technique, oil painting.
Paris, Musée du Luxembourg





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