Letter from France: July 2012
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
18-22 July: Chalons dans la rue
This outdoor arts festival reveals an entirely new way of looking at urban life. There are street parades in Chalons-sur-Saone and this year, those watching the event may be invited to participate!
Until 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
Until July 29: Sol LeWitt, Wall Drawings from 1968 to 2007
Thirty three black and white wall drawings by conceptual artist Sol LeWitt, were recently executed on-site in the Centre Pompidou-Metz by students of art and architecture.
Metz, Moselle-57, Centre Pompidou-Metz.
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, at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
Metz, Moselle-57, Centre Pompidou-Metz
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 August 5: José Marià Sert, The Titan at work
“Art has lost the last representative of great painting” wrote Paul Claudel in Le Figaro on 14 December 1945, on the death of his friend the painter José Marià Sert. A Petit Palais exhibition aspires to return José Marià Sert to his rightful place as one of the most important painters of the first half of the 20th century.
Paris, Musée du Petit Palais
Until August 19: Victor Hugo, Arcs-en-Ciel au Noir (Dark Side of Rainbows)
In the Parisian Victor Hugo’s house, an exhibition of 80 black and white drawings chosen by Annie Le Brun from the unique collection of drawings by Victor Hugo himself. Some of them are presented to public for the first time.
Paris, Maison de Victor Hugo (Victor Hugo’s House in Paris)
Until September 9: Les Séductions du Palais (Attractions of Palate)
Mainly issued from collections of the National Museum of China and also from the Guimet Museum in Paris, various artefacts show the parallel evolution of cooking and crockery all along the Chinese history, giving the world one of the finest “cuisine” and in the same time so many pieces of art to be used for cooking and consuming food.
Paris, Musée du Quai Branly
Until September 9: Modigliani, Soutine, the Adventure of Montparnasse
Jonas Netter was one of the most important collector of the 20th century, who discovered Modigliani and Soutine, buying dozens of their works as from Utrillo and others painters of Montparnasse group. This fabulous collection, protected by Jonas Netter’s heirs, is now presented to public for the first time since 70 years.
Until September 16: Marc Jacobs Louis Vuitton exhibition
The Decorative Arts Museum presents an exhibition celebrating the work of two men who have changed the face of fashion and style in their times – Louis Vuitton and March Jacobs.
Paris, Musée des Arts Décoratifs
Until October 21: Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire, International Garden Festival
This year the theme of the 28th edition of the International Garden Festival is “Gardens of Delight, Gardens of Delirium“. Twenty-one amazing projects selected by the jury offer a wide overview of horticultural landscapes creation by designers from all over the world. A visit of the castle itself is not to be missed.
Loire-et-Cher 41, Château de Chaumont-sur-Loire
Until November 4: Phares-Lighthouses
A deep dive in the mythical world of lighthouses through Ages, a discovery of their history and architecture feats, and a good way to find out about the men who served them.
Paris, Musée de la Marine
Until November 11: Deauville by Yul Bryner
Deauville pays tribute on Deauville Boardwalk to famous actor Yul Brynner with an outside exhibition of 40 Yul Brynner’s intimate portraits of stars, behind-the-scenes photographs and city life photographs to discover his extreme talent as a photographer. Yul Brynner was strongly linked to Deauville, where he used to live in summertime during his 20 last years.
Deauville, Calvados – 14, Deauville Boardwalk
Until November 30: Keith Haring’s Revolution between Pop and Modern Art
This exhibition of the works of Keith Haring is nestled inside the historical Chateau de Pommard – the birth place of Pommard, one of the best Burgundy wines. Visits includes the castle itself, wine museum, fabulous cellars and a final tasting.
Côte-d’Or – 21, Château de Pommard
Until 3 March 2013: Rodin, the Flesh and the Marble
Partially in renovation, the Rodin’s museum exhibits 50 marble sculptures by Rodin, highlighting the extreme quality of the sculptor’s work, especially the Rodin’s virtuosity to give life to marble bodies.
Paris, Musée Rodin
Until 2013 November 10: 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
New and permanent
Museum Jean Cocteau-Collection Severin Wunderman, in Menton, Alpes Maritimes
The largest in the world and a must see collection of the works of Jean Cocteau. The works were given to the town of Menton, by the private collector Severin Wunderman.
Menton, Alpes Maritimes-06, Musée Jean Cocteau
Alésia MuseoParc, Alise-Sainte -Reine, Côte d’Or
Right in the center of the battlefield of Alesia that saw the final battle of Gauls’ War with Julius Caesar’s victory against Vercingetorix, stands the new circular building of the Alesia MuseoParc. Inside, you’ll find lots of interactive explanations, a realistic and astonishing movie of the battle on a seven meters screen, and outside, an amazing life-size reconstruction of the Caesar double fortifications to help visitors to understand one of the biggest battle of Roman times.
Alise-Sainte-Reine, Côte-d’Or-21, MuséoParc d’Alésia
Museum d’Ennery, Paris
Mrs Clemence d’Ennery offered to France in 1894 her fabulous collection of more than 7,000 Chinese and Japanese artworks under strict conditions including presentation of all these pieces inside her own house that she had designed as a personal orientalist museum. Closed for years for security reasons, the museum recently reopened offering to jump back to the time when the irruption of Far East Asian Art influenced European collectors and artists. (Important notice: reservation is mandatory)
Paris, Musée d’Ennery
Museum Lalique, Wingen-sur-Moser, Alsace
In the small village where during 90 years were produced a large part of the creations of René Lalique, a great artist of Art Nouveau and Art Deco, hundred of his works are displayed highlighting his incredible genius as jeweller and glassmaker. This very modern museum, hidden on the flank of a small green valley, is a perfect case for Lalique’s jewels, perfume bottles, tableware, vases, lights, crystal and drawings.
Wingen-sur Moser, Bas Rhin-67, Alsace, Musée Lalique
Musée Toulouse-Lautrec, Albi, Tarn
Inside the fabulous Palais de la Berbie, the former palace of Bishops of Albi, a UNESCO World Heritage, the hugest collection of pieces of art by Toulouse-Lautrec is now displayed in a new scenography offering a new reading of each facet of the artist’s work, including youth works as well as portraits of Montmartre people and scenes from the world of brothel.
Albi, Tarn-81, Musée Toulouse-Lautrec