Photo: © Centre Pompidou
We’ve talked about new restaurants last week. Now let’s see what’s on in the art sector and which exhibitions are really worth seeing. Here is our top-ten list with the things you shouldn’t miss.
- The Louvre is inaugurating its new department of Islamic Art this weekend. After the great pyramid project it represents a new milestone in the history of the world famous museum. It’s not only an architectural gem, but with the new department it invites visitors on a sensory voyage into its huge Islamic collection. Now, that our vision of Islam is more and more tainted by politics, this is an opportunity to discover the radiant face of this civilization. The architects Mario Bellini and Rudy Ricciotti have created an architectural masterpiece of 2,800 m2 of exhibition area in the Cour Visconti; this involved excavating to a depth of 12 metres within the heart of the historic palace of the royal kingdom of France, which dates back to the 12th century. Eight centuries later, a glass roof seems to float above one of the palace’s most ornate courtyards: a ‘dragonfly’s wing’ on which you may travel into the rich civilisation and the Arts of Islam.
The roof of the new Islamic art department of the Louvre Museum. Photo: AFP, Kenzo Tribouillard
- Also scheduled this weekend is the opening of the Memorial de la Shoah at Drancy. 70 years after the deportation of 63 000 French Jews from Drancy, France is finally inaugurating a memorial remembering the victims of the Shoah. Drancy was what you can call a hub: the majority of the nearly 80 000 Jews deported from France were imprisoned in a building they call “cité de la Muette”. Only 2 or 3 percent of them survived the German extermination camp of Auschwitz. The new memorial and its museum will help to remember them. Let’s not forget their names.
- Now think Venice, think Canaletto: Thanks to some generous loans, the Jacquemart-André Museum is showing masterpieces of “Canaletto – Guardi”, the two Italian painters known as the Vedutisti (14 of September 2012 until 14 of January 2013). Just for the record: In the 18th century, Venice became the subject of choice for painters making the Veduta one of the most collected and most loved genres among the public. At the same time the Maillol Museum is showcasing around 50 paintings from Canaletto in its exhibition “Canaletto a Venise” (19 of September 2012 until 10th of February 1013). Wrong timing? See it the other way around: Paris is the place to be for Canaletto fans this fall.
- On 10th of October the Grand Palais will open its show about one of the masters of contemporary American art: “Edward Hopper” (until 28 January 2013).The exhibition seeks to show different facets of his work and shed some light on its complexity.
- Also at the Grand Palais will be showcased “Bohème”, an exhibition dedicated to the myth of the bohemias (from 26 September 2012 until 14 January 2013). On display will be 180 works based around the myth of the artist as a rebellious, unconventional and misunderstood figure. Here it’s all about crossing several disciplines like painting, photography, literature and music.
- As already mentioned, there will be “Dalí” at the Centre Pompidou (from 11th of November until 25th of March 2013). With this exhibition the Centre Pompidou wants to pay tribute to one of the most complex and prolific figures in 20th century art. The show sets out to throw light on the full power of his work and the part played in it by his personality and his strokes of genius as much as his outrageousness. Among the masterpieces exhibited, you’ll rediscover some of the greatest iconic works, including the artist’s most famous picture, “The Persistence of Memory”, more commonly called “Melting Watches”.
- At the Musée du Luxemburg you can enjoy an exquisite exhibition about „The Modern Art Club“, „Le Cercle de l’Art Moderne“, showcasing some 90 works from artists that formed the circle of the same on 29 January 1906 in Le Havre. Between 1906 and 1910, the group organised exhibitions, lecture series, poetry readings and concerts. But above all the were the young Fauves, brought by their friends Braque, Dufy, and the collector Emile Othon Friesz. The exhibition is on display until 6 January 2013 and as its subject is a bit off the beaten track, you might get to enjoy a visit to a museum that is not overcrowded.
- The Musée d’Art moderne de la Ville de Paris has selected four hundred works by a hundred artists to illustrate a subject to which no huge exhibition has been dedicated until now in France: “L’Art en guerre – France 1938-1947 – From Picasso to Dubuffet” (12 October 2012 until 17 February 2012) . It’s about Art and War. It’s about survival and the salutary power of creation.
- “Impressionism and Fashion” is the title of the show at the Musée d’Orsay (from 25 September 2012 to 20 January 2013) showing how the famous painters of French impressionism did picture the reality of men and women – and with it their fashions and clothes – between 1860 and 1880. They considered their portraits as a snapshot of person in his or her familiar settings. Somehow you can look at this exhibition as if it were a fashion magazine from the second half of the 19th century that appeared by chance from old archives.
- Last but not least comes the Palais de Tokyo with “Imagine the Imaginary” (28 September 1012 until 11 February 2013). After the renovation and opening of the spaces, Palais de Tokyo has become the place in Paris for contemporary art. „Imagine the Imaginary“ brings together artists from different generations whose works demonstrate and sometimes describe the processes involved in their development. Organized in two parts, the show opens on September 28 with a themed exhibition, the imagination Adrift, and a solo exhibition by Fabrice Hyber, Raw materials, which presents both older works and four landscapes dedicated to describing a world in which all the rules have been reinvented. The second part of the exhibition gets under way on October 17 with solo exhibitions by Neïl Beloufa, Damir Ocko, Markus Schinwald and Helen Marten. “Imagine the Imaginary” is a good opportunity to get a picture of what’s going on among a small selection of contemporary artists.
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