Intimate impressions at the Marmottan Monet Museum

Located at the West of Paris, right next to the charming Bois de Boulogne and its lakes, the Marmottan Monet museum is one of those Parisian museums that too few visitors have heard of. Nevertheless, it is a true goldmine for impressionnist painting enthousiasts, and it offers very rich yet intimate exhibition. It would be a shame to miss it. Here is what you will be able to admire there...

Located at the West of Paris, right next to the charming Bois de Boulogne and its lakes, the Marmottan Monet museum is one of those Parisian museums that too few visitors have heard of. Nevertheless, it is a true goldmine for impressionnist painting enthousiasts, and it offers very rich yet intimate exhibition. It would be a shame to miss it. Here is what you will be able to admire there...

 

Paul Marmottan's collection

 

The museum was born thanks to Paul Marmottan (1856-1932). When he died, the intellectual and collector gave his art collection as well as his private hotel to the Academy of Arts of Paris, who turned it into the Marmottan Museum. Passionate about the arts of Haute-Époque, this man accumulated a tremendous collection of pieces from the First Empire, of every possible form : paintings, drawings, prints, miniatures, medals, sculptures, furniture, bronzes, porcelains, etc. In this collection, visible at the museum, you will find names such as Fabre, Boilly, Gauffier, Carmontelle, Bertin, and many others.

 

Impressionnist painting : Claude Monet, Berthe Morisot, and others

 

Thanks to several generous legacies over time, the Marmottan Monet Museum has made its name among museums that broadcast the richest collections of impressionnist painting. The story began in 1957, when Madame Donop de Monchy donated her incredible collection of paintings (approximately twenty) to the museum. Among them are artists as famous as Monet, Morisot, Renoir, Sisley, Pissarro or Daumier. What makes this particular collection unique is that it has the single most famous painting of the impressionnist movement : Impression soleil levant (by Claude Monet). This piece is considered the foundation of impressionnism, and it even gave it its title.

 

When his father Claude Monet died, Michel Monet also gave the Marmottan Monet Museum the right to present the pieces of the great artist to the public. But Monet's personal collection was not only composed of his own paintings, he also owned paintings by other artists, such as his friend and emblematic figure of the impressionnist movement Pierre-Auguste Renoir.

 

In 1966, thanks to legacies such as these, the museum became the one with the greatest collection of paintings by Monet in the world. But above that, the Marmottan Monet Museum also presents a very important collection of masterpieces by other impressionnist artists, such as Berthe Morisot (some 80 paintings!), Paul Gaughin, as well as the ones mentionned above, and many others. This makes the museum an unavoidable place for impressionnism enthousiasts !

 

A tremendous collection of illuminations

 

Furthermore, in a separate and newly refurbished room, the Marmottan Monet Museum also displays the immense illuminations collection gathered by Georges Wildenstein (1892-1963), that was donated by his son after he died. It is the single most important illuminations collection in the world (several hundred pieces!), and spans through the art of illumination from the Midle Ages to the Renaissance. Browsing through it, you will find French, Italian, English and Flemish illuminations, among which are some of the greatest masterpieces of the style, such as « The apostles' mission » by San Michele's master in Murano, « Saint Romuald's dream. Initial O. » by Attavante, or « Judas' kiss » by Jean Bourdichon.

 

Practical information

 

Address :

 

Musée Marmottan Monet

2, rue Louis-Boilly 
75016 Paris

 

Closest metro station : La Muette (line 9)

Closest bus stop : Porte de la Muette (line 63)

 

Opening hours :

From Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m to 6 p.m
(Last entry : 5.30 p.m)
The museum opens late on Thursdays : from 10 a.m to 9 p.m
(Last entry : 8.30 p.m)

 

Prices :

 

Full fare : 11€

Reduced fare : 6,50€ (children between 7 and 18, students below 25...)

Free for children below 7, journalists, people with handicap...

 

Audioguides are available in French and English (3€)

 

Image : « Impression, soleil levant » by Claude Monet (1872, Marmottan Monet Museum, Paris)

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A new place for culture in Paris : the Louis Vuitton foundation

On October 20th, 2014, the long awaited Louis Vuitton Foundation was inaugurated, at the edge of the Bois de Boulogne, in the 16th arrondissement of Paris. The Louis Vuitton company Foundation, created in 2006, works to promote art and culture through large scale sponsorships (engaged by the Louis Vuitton company in 1990). Today, it is one of the largest and most important actors of art sponsorship in France.The project to build a structure devoted to the foundation was born in 2001. Bernard Arnault, the president of the foundation declared : « We had to build a foundation in which part of the sponsorship could crystallize itself. A new space that would open the dialogue with a wide public, and offer artists and intellectuals a platform of debates and reflexion ». After years of elaborating the project (conducted by famous architect Frank Gehry) and constructing, the building finally opened its doors to the public in the fall of 2014.So, do you need to add this stop to your journey in the capital ? Let's take a look at what the Louis Vuitton foundation has to offer...

On October 20th, 2014, the long awaited Louis Vuitton Foundation was inaugurated, at the edge of the Bois de Boulogne, in the 16th arrondissement of Paris. The Louis Vuitton company Foundation, created in 2006, works to promote art and culture through large scale sponsorships (engaged by the Louis Vuitton company in 1990). Today, it is one of the largest and most important actors of art sponsorship in France.

 

The project to build a structure devoted to the foundation was born in 2001. Bernard Arnault, the president of the foundation declared : « We had to build a foundation in which part of the sponsorship could crystallize itself. A new space that would open the dialogue with a wide public, and offer artists and intellectuals a platform of debates and reflexion ».

After years of elaborating the project (conducted by famous architect Frank Gehry) and constructing, the building finally opened its doors to the public in the fall of 2014.

 

So, do you need to add this stop to your journey in the capital ? Let's take a look at what the Louis Vuitton foundation has to offer...

 

An exceptional place

 

President of the Louis Vuitton Foundation Bernard Arnault declared « We wanted to provide Paris with an exceptional place for art and culture, and chosen the path of boldness and emotion by entrusting Frank Gehry with the implementation of a building that would be emblematic of the XXIst Century. »*

 

So the construction of this exceptional place was led by famous architect Frank Gehry, awarded with the prestigious Pritzker prize in 1989. You may know of him through some of his most beautiful and famous achievements such as the Guggenheim museum of Bilbao, or the New York Tower by Gehry.

 

« Very much like the everchanging world, we wanted to conceive a building that would evolve according to the light and time of day, creating an impression of continual change and ephemera. »*, the architect declared. He followed through for years with this project that started in 2001 with a single draft on a sheet of paper, and said he wanted to « build in Paris a magnificent ship that symbolizes the cultural vocation of France. »*

 

To create this building, Frank Gehry took inspiration in the naval language, putting together a foundation that looks like a tremendous sailboat, floating on Bois de Boulogne. The Louis Vuitton foundation is made of no less than 12 gigantic sails of glass and almost 20 000 white concrete slabs that cover the 11 galleries that occupy the 7 000 square meters of the building. Pushing the limits of technology, the edifice of a thousand gleams has already made its name as one of the major architectural pieces of the XXIst Century.

 

What to see at the Louis Vuitton foundation ?

 

Permanent collection

 

The Louis Vuitton foundation has no less than 11 galleries, that host an impressive collection of contemporary art. The key word being variety, the foundation broadcasts very different styles and medias (painting, sculpture, photography, film, large and small scale installations...) by artists from various backgrounds such as Akram Zaatari, Ed Atkins, Tacita Dean, Alberto Giacometti, Isa Genzken, Bas Jan Ader, Maurizio Cattelan, Nam June Paik, Annette Messager, and many others... A true treasure mine for contemporary art lovers, that will ravish diverse sensitivities and tastes.

 

Ongoing exhibitions

 

  • Frank Gehry (until March 16th, 2015) : since the opening of the foundation, this exhibition dedicated to the work of its architect, Frank Gehry, retraces the genesis of the edifice and its construction, that was sometimes choppy but always ambitious.

  • Olafur Eliasson – Contact (until February 23rd,2015) : this exhibition, specially made for the Louis Vuitton foundation, is built like a path, a journey through the installations of artist Olafur Eliasson. He wanted to explorate the relationship between Man, his boy and his environment through a search on light, reflections and optic, following his guideline : the horizon and its fragility.

 

How to go from Hotel du Danube ?

 

Address of the Louis Vuitton foundation :

8, Avenue du Mahatma Gandhi, 75116, Paris

(In the Jardin d'acclimatation in Bois de Boulogne)

 

By metro (about 45 minutes) :

First, go to Saint-Germain des Prés metro station (take a left when you leave the hotel, then second on the right until you get to the Saint-Germain des Prés church, the metro is just behind it). Take metro line 4 in the direction of Porte de Clignancourt. At Châtelet, change for metro line 1 in the direction of La Défense. Get off at Les Sablons station. When you get out, take Boulevard des Sablons towards the Bois de Boulogne. At the first roundabout, take Avenue Mahatma Gandhi on the right. The Louis Vuitton foundation will be on your right, at number 8.

 

* Quotes from the website of the Louis Vuitton Foundation : http://www.fondationlouisvuitton.fr/

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Paul Durand-Ruel – le pari de l'impressionnisme : an exhibition you must not miss !

The Musée du Luxembourg is currently hosting the first exhibition devoted to Art dealer and collector Paul Durand-Ruel. Presenting a tremendous selection of eighty masterpieces of impressionnism (most of which have crossed the Atlantic for the occasion!), with famous artists such as Renoir, Manet, Monnet and many others, this exhibition offers a gorgeous overview of this artistic movement, precursor of a true upheaval in Art at the turn of the XXth century. Impressionnist painting enthousiasts will enjoy this exceptional reunion of some of the greatest talents and most emblematic pieces of this period in a unique place, overlooking the Jardins du Luxembourg, right in the heart of Paris.

The Musée du Luxembourg is currently hosting the first exhibition devoted to Art dealer and collector Paul Durand-Ruel. Presenting a tremendous selection of eighty masterpieces of impressionnism (most of which have crossed the Atlantic for the occasion!), with famous artists such as Renoir, Manet, Monnet and many others, this exhibition offers a gorgeous overview of this artistic movement, precursor of a true upheaval in Art at the turn of the XXth century. Impressionnist painting enthousiasts will enjoy this exceptional reunion of some of the greatest talents and most emblematic pieces of this period in a unique place, overlooking the Jardins du Luxembourg, right in the heart of Paris.

 

Who was Paul Durand-Ruel ?

 

Major figure of the diffusion of impressionnism at the end of the XIXth century and at the turn of the XXth century, Paul Durand-Ruel (1831-1922) was an Art lover and an « avant-gardiste » before anything else. He was perhaps the greatest Art dealer of the XIXth century, and some Art historians even consider him « the inventor of modern Art market ». At a time when the impressionnist movement is still despised as a temporary and absurd whim in the then short-sighted Art world, Paul Durand-Ruel's sharp and iconoclast eye sees in it a promising and innovative stream. Little by little, he takes on acquiring a great number of paintings by artists who are now tremendously famous such as Édouard Manet, Paul-Auguste Renoir or Claude Monnet. He is one of the only Art dealers to take this bet back then. And this bet will reveal to be a winning one for him, but also and especially for the artists he discovered and who will gain – partly thanks to his support – international fame and a major part to play in Art History.

 

Why this exhibition ?

 

We public have a relationship with Art that is almost entirely centered on the artists themselves and their work. So much so that we often forget the crucial rôle of Art dealers in the making of Art History. Opinion leaders, talents and trends discoverers, but also and most importantly broadcasters, Art dealers have, with their choices and sensitivity, constructed Art History as we know it (and still do!). However, outside of the restricted circles of the Art market professionals, they are usually in the shadow, unknown or poorly known by the public. We only discover them through a handful of exhibitions that unveil their personnal collections... or thanks to exhibitions such as the one currently presented by the Musée du Luxembourg.

 

Practical information

 

The exhibition is ongoing until Sunday, February 8th (included).

The Musée du Luxembourg is situated at 19 rue de Vaugirard - 75006 Paris.

 

Timetable

 

Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m to 7 p.m
Mondays and Fridays from 10 a.m to 10 p.m
Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m to 8 p.m

 

Prices

 

  • Full Price : 12,00 euros

  • Reduced Price : 7,50 euros

  • Special « youngster » price : 7,50 euros from Monday to Friday, as from 5 p.m, two tickets for one for youngsters between 16 and 25

  • Free for children under 16

 

How to go from Hotel du Danube ?

 

It is only a 15-minute walk : When you get out of the hotel, take a left on rue Jacob. Then take the second street on the right (rue Bonaparte) and follow it straight ahead until you get to the Jardin du Luxembourg. You will cross the Boulevard Saint-Germain on the way, be careful not to get lost at the croosroad and follow the rue Bonaparte. Once you get to the edge of the Jardin du Luxembourg, walk left for a few meters. You have arrived to the Musée du Luxembourg !

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Protographies : Oscar Muňoz at the Jeu de Paume

If there is an exhibition that should not be missed in Paris these days, it has to be the one currently hosted by the national gallery of the Jeu de Paume (until September 21st). Entitled « Protographies », it unaffectedly broadcasts a very interesting selection of Oscar Muňoz's pieces, thus retracing forty years of a fruitful career. Unclassifiable as well as fascinating, the famous colombian artist has experimented with art forms as varied as sculpture, video, drawing, painting and installation. The « Protographies » exhibition is a plural journey through time, with a hint of nostalgia.

If there is an exhibition that should not be missed in Paris these days, it has to be the one currently hosted by the national gallery of the Jeu de Paume (until September 21st). Entitled « Protographies », it unaffectedly broadcasts a very interesting selection of Oscar Muňoz's pieces, thus retracing forty years of a fruitful career. Unclassifiable as well as fascinating, the famous colombian artist has experimented with art forms as varied as sculpture, video, drawing, painting and installation. The « Protographies » exhibition is a plural journey through time, with a hint of nostalgia.

 

With his surprising inventiveness, Oscar Muňoz seems to never be out of ideas when it comes to stage onto his work his obsession with the connection between image and memory. This interrogation is truly the thread upon which he has woven the whole of his work. Fascinated by photography and the way it gives immortality to events and people that are ephemeral per se, the artist constantly questions the ability of image to withold memory. What becomes of the latter when the first is erased ?

 

Oscar Muňoz's true strength is that he allows the spectator to wonder with him about time that passes and the erasable nature of memories, and along with them, the things that we remember. Without ever becoming morbid, the artist makes small bits of the present and the past appear and disappear : silhouettes long out of the shower, which casts persist on the plastic curtain, faces randomly taken out of obituaries that appear for just a second under a stranger's breath on a mirror, or that liquify and disappear in a siphon, only leaving behind a meaningless ink spot... Muňoz plays with the elements, and perhaps especially water, that soaks surfaces, leaks or evaporates while bringing along the reflection of anonymous faces, that immediately fall into oblivion.

 

Oscar Muňoz's work is also dwelled with Colombia's dark History, and its decades of civil war. Through his hand, the headlines of newspaper slowly disappear, and along with them, the memory of past events. « Protographies » is an intimate, fascinating and highly moving exhibition, that goes through all the themes cherished by the artist. The message that emanates from Oscar Muňoz's work is like a silent and throbbing melody. Rather than bringing lost things back to our memory, he simply manages to remind us that we forget.

 

How to go from Hotel du Danube ?

 

Take the opportunity to take a nice walk ! (walking time : approx. 25mn)

When leaving the hotel, take a left, then immediately turn left again on rue des Saints Pères. Cross the Seine by taking the Carrousel bridge (on your left) and walk to the left in the direction of place de la Concorde in the tremendous jardin des Tuileries. The Jeu de Paume is right at the end of the park, on the right.

 

Timetable and prices :

 

The museum is open on tuesdays from 11 a.m to 9 p.m and on wednesdays through sundays from 11 a.m to 7 p.m

Ticket : 10€ (reduced price : 7€50)

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