PARIS EXHIBITIONS FOR THIS YEAR 2015 …

  If you find nothing to see or do in Paris, then you should make an appointment with a shrink. And yes, I have had the experience of visitors to Paris telling me that they are bored because there is nothing to see or do in Paris! However, let us ignore them. In 2013 (latest […]

The Hotel de Ville - Paris's city hall (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

The Hotel de Ville – Paris’s city hall (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

 

If you find nothing to see or do in Paris, then you should make an appointment with a shrink. And yes, I have had the experience of visitors to Paris telling me that they are bored because there is nothing to see or do in Paris!

However, let us ignore them.

The River Seine in Paris (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

The River Seine in Paris (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

In 2013 (latest statistics available) Paris received 84.7 million tourists making France the world’s Number One tourist spot, as indeed it has been for years. This means that as 69.8 million tourists had visited the United States of America in 2013 which had made the States the world’s second most visited country, almost 15 million more tourists had come to France.

Judging by the hordes of jeans-clad, sandwich-munching, Coke-drinking people clutching Metro maps I had seen ambling along the streets of Paris this past year France would yet again have been the World’s Number 1 tourist destination in 2014.

And so it will probably be again this year of 2015.

Therefore, I will tell you what Paris’s museums are offering you or will be offering you should you be planning to be one of those tourists.

(1) Pompidou Centre.  

I am going to start with the Pompidou Centre which we Parisians are inclined to call Beaubourg because it is situated in the area of Paris named Beaubourg. I will however call it The Pompidou Centre now so that there is no confusion.

The Pompidou Centre is hosting a Jeff Koons Exhibition. I’ve seen it and it is magnificent. The exhibition opened on November 26 last year and runs through to Monday, April 27 of this year.

A Jeff Koons at the Pompidou Centre (copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

A Jeff Koons at the Pompidou Centre (copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Opening times are 11 am to 9 pm and the museum is closed on Tuesdays. On Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays the museum remains open until 11 p.m.

A ticket costs €13 and this includes the museum’s permanent exhibitions. (Note: I will only be giving the price of a ticket for an adult.)

Jeff Koons at Beaubourg Centre. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Jeff Koons at Beaubourg Centre. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

Another Jeff Koons at Paris's Pompidou Centre. (Copyright Marilyn Z, Tomlins)

Another Jeff Koons at Paris’s Pompidou Centre. (Copyright Marilyn Z, Tomlins)

The Pompidou Centre is not the most beautiful building in Paris – in fact it is ugly and we here in Paris say it looks like an electrical power plant or oil refinery – but one does have a fantastic view of Paris from it when taking the escalator up to the building’s higher floors.

Pompidou Centre (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

Pompidou Centre (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

The centre also has a great souvenir shop and a nice café where one can sit looking down over the museum’s entrance hall. The café does some great baguette sandwiches as well as club and toasted sandwiches. And you would not have to rob a bank to be able to pay for those sandwiches.

Braubourg entrance lobby (Marilyn Z. Tomlins copyright)

Pompidou Centre looking down on the entrance lobby (Marilyn Z. Tomlins copyright)

 

Sacre Coeur from Pompidou Center's 6th floor (Copyright Mariln Z.Tomlins)

Sacre Coeur from Pompidou Center’s 6th floor (Copyright Mariln Z.Tomlins)

 

(2) The Louvre.

Need I say the Louvre Museum? No, I think anyone who does not know that the Louvre is a museum, must just have been born and would not want to know anything about it anyway.

Louvre - from the inside looking out (Copyright Marilyn Z;.Tomlins)

Louvre – from the inside looking out (Copyright Marilyn Z;.Tomlins)

As the Louvre’s press office has announced, and so very proudly, 9.3 million people visited the museum in 2014. This means that the Louvre is the world’s most visited museum. And oh do I not know this, because I’ve been there several times in 2014 and each time it was people as far as the eye could see.

Cy Twombly's 'The Ceiling' in the Louvre in Paris. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Cy Twombly’s ‘The Ceiling’ in the Louvre in Paris. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

On entering the museum one is asked from what country one hails, and if one says one lives in Paris (as I do) then one is asked in what arrondissement (district) or suburb of the capital one lives. Each answer is recorded so the Louvre knows that of the 9.3 million visitors most were Americans, next were the Chinese, then the Italians, then the English and then – surprisingly Brazilians. I am also surprised that most of the Louvre’s visitors were Americans because when I visited the museum in December escorting visiting relatives, I got the impression that there were not many Americans there. Chinese yes. Japanese yes.

Louvre under the pyramid on a 'quiet' day.(Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins

Louvre under the pyramid on a ‘quiet’ day.(Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins

The Louvre’s statistics also show that more than 50% of the visitors were in the 18-25 age group, and that 675,000 children in 27,000 school groups had visited the museum.

I am going to complain now about the Selfies in the Louvre because they are making a visit to the museum a most unpleasant experience. All make for the Mona Lisa (La Gioconda – the Joconde) their cell phones at the ready for a Selfie shot, and there they stand, in no way wanting to see the painting, but to snap themselves for others to see them. “Hi look you guys it’s me!” the expression on their faces say. The one on mine says: “No, it isn’t, you idiot! It’s Léonard de Vinci’s Mona Lisa!”

For this winter/spring season, from Friday, April 3 to Monday June 29 the Louvre will host a Nicolas Poussin exhibition – Poussin et Dieu – as this year it is 350 years since the French Baroque artist had died. He died in Rome on November 19, 1665, aged 71.

The English title of the exhibition will be Poussin and God.

The Louvre is closed on Tuesdays and will be closed on May 1, November 11 and on this year’s Christmas Day. It is open from 9 am to 6 pm and on Wednesdays and Fridays until 9.45 pm. A ticket to the permanent exhibitions costs €13 but note that this will not give you access to any of the temporary exhibitions. For access to the permanent exhibitions and one temporary exhibition you will have to pay €17. A ticket to the Poussin exhibition only will be €13 and it is in the Napoleon Hall.

 

The Wrestlers in the Louvre. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

The Wrestlers in the Louvre. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

(3) The Luxembourg Museum.

From Wednesday, March 18 to Sunday, July 19 the Luxembourg Museum in Paris’s 5th arrondissement (district) in the Latin Quarter will host The Tudors – Les Tudors. This will be the first time that a French museum hosts an exhibition about the Tudors.

Luxembourg Palace which houses the Luxembourg Museum (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Luxembourg Palace which houses the Luxembourg Museum (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

The museum is open every day of the week but the opening hours differ. Opening at 10 am every day but Saturday and Sunday when it opens at 9 am, the museum closes as 7 pm but for Monday and Friday when it closes at 10 pm.

An entry ticket costs €12.

Despite that I am not fond of the Tudors, I will be going.

Do know that you will have to have a walk through the Luxembourg Gardens.

Luxembourg Gardens (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Luxembourg Gardens (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

(4) The Grand Palais.

From Tuesday, March 25 to Monday, July 13 the Grand Palais at the lower end of Avenue des Champs-Élysées is hosting a Velázquez exhibition – Velázquez et la triomphe de la peinture espagnoleVelászquez and the triumph of Spanish painting.

The museum is closed on Tuesdays and open from Wednesday to Saturday from 10 am to 10 pm, and on Sundays and Mondays from 10 am to 8 pm.

It costs €13 to go in.

Grand Palais (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

Grand Palais (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

Grand Palais -- When the Steins (exhibition about Gertrude Stein, her brother and Alice B.Toklas - was at the museum. (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

Grand Palais — When the Steins (exhibition about Gertrude Stein, her brother and Alice B.Toklas – was at the museum. (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

The Grand Palais will be hosting another major exhibition. This is a Picasso exhibition – Picasso et l’art contemporainPicasso and Contemporary Art, and it will open on Thursday, October 8 to Tuesday, February 2, 2016. Something for next Christmas therefore.

Opening times and prices are the same as for the Velázquez and take note that the entrance to these two exhibitions will be at the side of the building on Avenue du Général-Eisenhower.

(5) Picasso Museum.

Of course there is also the Picasso Museum which reopened in October 2014 after a six-year closure for renovation.

Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso

The museums has over 5000 works of art of not only of the Spanish-born Pablo Picasso but also of artists like Renoir, Matisse and Cezanne which are from Picasso’s personal collection.

The museum is in the Hôtel Salé (no it is not a hotel but a stately mansion) at 5 rue de Thorigny in Paris’s 3rd arrondissement (district). The museum is closed on Mondays and will be closed on May 1 and November 11 and this year’s Christmas Day. It is open from 11 am to 6 pm and on Saturdays and Sundays it opens at 9.30 am.

It will cost you €11 to go in.

And so yes, this year you will be able to feast your eyes on Picasso here in Paris.

(6) Carnavalet Museum.

This museum at 16 rue des Francs-Bourgeois in the 3rd arrondissement (district) is hosting a Napoléon exhibition – Napoléon et ParisNapoleon and Paris, from Wednesday, April 8 to Sunday, August 30.

The museum is open every day but Monday and the opening hours are from 10 am to 6 pm. And it is free.

Sculpture of Napoleon in Paris's Louvre Museum (copyright marilynztomlins)

Sculpture of Napoleon in Paris’s Louvre Museum (copyright marilynztomlins)

A word here about Napoléon. The Chateau (Palace) of Fontainebleau in the town of Fontainebleau south of Paris was his favourite residence, and it was from there that he bid a sad goodbye to his army to go into the exile the British had forced on him. For about three years now the French Ministry of Culture has been restoring the chateau and on January 26 Madame Fleur Pellerin, France’s Minister of Culture, will at the chateau present a plan for further restoration work. The estimated cost is €120 million. The state is therefore going to ask for donations. If I had the money … I will donate generously, because, as those of you who know me will know, I am a Napoléon admirer. I adore him and I have a wish to go to Saint Helena there where he had died and where he lay buried before his remains had been brought to Paris and to Les Invalides.

Something else about Fontainbleau Palace: it is beautiful and so very much worth a visit. The town is also charming and go for a stroll along its pedestrian streets after you’ve visited the palace.

Fontainebleau Palace (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Fontainebleau Palace (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

Fontainebleau Jan 2014 me

(7) Versailles Palace.

Versailles Palace's restored gate. (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

Versailles Palace’s restored gate. (Copyright Marilyn Z. Tomlins)

Having mentioned Fontainebleau I will now speak of the Palace of Versailles. (By the way the Palace of Fontainebleau is so much more beautiful than the Palace of Versailles and I am not the only one to say this.)

This year Paris is to commemorate the death of another famous person. It is none other than Louis XIV, the Sun King and creator of the Palace of Versailles, who had died on September 1, 1715. In other words 300 years ago this year.

Therefore from Tuesday, February 24, Louis XIV will be much in the forefront at the Palace of Versailles. On that day an exhibition of the paintings of Charles de la Fosse, Louis favorite artist, will open in the newly-restored Apollo Salon from which leads the Galarie des Glaces. This exhibition will run through to Sunday, May 24.

A second commemorative event will be that on each Tuesday from Tuesday, March 31 to Tuesday, October 27 there will be a musical fountain show in the park.

A ticket to enter the park on those nights will cost from €9 to €14.

A third commemorative event will start on Thursday, June 18. This is an exhibition in the Grand Trianon Palace which is in the park, and it will be about the power which Versailles had held in France from the time of Louis XIV to General Charles de Gaulle. The exhibition will run through to Monday, November 9.

The two dates – June 18 and November 9 – are important to the French as on June 18 1940 General de Gaulle in a broadcast from London had appealed to the French nation not to surrender to Hitler which they did after all two days later, and the General had died on November 9, 1970.

The Louis XIV commemoration will end with another exhibition – Le Roi est mort (The King is dead) – which will be held in the main palace itself. It will open on Monday, October 26 and end on Sunday, February 21, 2016.

And do remember Fontainebleau Palace –Okay?

Can be seen in Fontainebleau Palace's park.  (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Can be seen in Fontainebleau Palace’s park. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

(8)  Jacquemart-André Museum

This museum close to Avenue des Champs-Élysées is hosting the De Giotto à Caravage – Les passions de Roberto Longhi exhibition.

In English it is called ‘From Giotto to Caravaggio – The passions of Roberto Longhi’, and that is exactly what this exhibition is about: the love of Italian art historian, connoisseur and collector Roberto Longhi (1890/1970) for Italian Baroque art. On display will be his collection as well as paintings on loan from the museums of Florence and Venice – and the Vatican Museum. One will therefore be able to admire paintings by Giotto (1266/1337), Masaccio (1404/1428), Masolino (1383/1447), Piero della Francesca 1415/1492), Ribera (1591/1652) and Caravaggio (1571/1610).

Many of the paintings will be seen in France for the first time.

Caravaggio's Boy Bitten by a lizard.

Caravaggio’s Boy Bitten by a lizard.

The poster for the exhibition will show Caravaggio’s ‘Boy bitten by a lizard’ (Garçon mordu par un lézard).

I am however hoping that his ‘The Entombment of Christ’ will be on show: its home is the Vatican Museum.

Caravaggio's The Entombment of Christ

Caravaggio’s The Entombment of Chris

The exhibition opens on Friday, March 27 and will run through to Monday, July 20. The museum is open every day from 10 am to 6 pm and on Saturdays until 7 pm. There is a wonderful café there: the Café Jacquemart-André which is pricey, pricey, pricey. You can also lunch there Monday to Saturday from 11.45 am to 3 pm.

It will cost you €12 to see the exhibition.

The museum’s address is: No 158 Boulevard Haussman in the 8th arrondissement (district).

The museum is also hosting Splendor of portrait at the court of the Medici – Splendeur du portrait à la Court des Mèdicis.

You will be able to feast your eyes on 60 portraits by the 16th century Florentine portrait painters Bronzino, Salviati and Pontormo.

The exhibition will open on Friday, September 11 and will run through to Monday, January 25, 2016. So something for the Fall and the Festive Season.

(9) Quay Branly Museum

An exhibition about the Mayas – Mayas, revelation d’un temps sans fin – which had opened in October last year is still running until Sunday, February 8. So if you want to visit it then you will have to rush to get air or train tickets for Paris.

I will quote from the museum’s website so that you will know what you are to expect:

This exhibition enables the visitor to appreciate the legacy of the Maya to humanity. In thematic order – the relationship with the environment, the power of cities, funerary rites – the exhibition presents the various aspects of this culture and its creative abilities. The exhibition attempts to present both a general overview and to show the variety of styles and aesthetic successes of the different Maya groups, each of them with its own language and means of expression.

The museum is closed on Monday but open from 11 am to 7 pm on the other days of the week, and on a Friday and Sunday it is even open until 9 pm.

A ticket costs €9.

(10) Montmartre Museum

The museum is currently and until Friday, September 25, hosting the L’Esprit de Montmarte et l’Art Modern (1875-1910) – The Spirit of Montmartre and Modern Art (1875-1910).

On show are 150 art works and over 200 documents which show the role this part of Paris had played in the world of art at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th.

Next, from October this year until the middle of 2016 the museum will be hosting the exhibition From Utrillo to Picasso. Yes, more Picasso.

The museum, which is behind Sacre Coeur Basilica, is open every day of the week from 10 am to 6 pm and it will cost you €9.50 to go in.

Know that if you are going to be there on a warm and sunny day, do allow yourself time to wander through the garden.

Sacre Coeur Basilica from the garden of the Montmartre Museum. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Sacre Coeur Basilica from the garden of the Montmartre Museum. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Montmartre Museum Garden. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Montmartre Museum Garden. (Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

 

(11) Art and History of Judaism Museum or the Mahj as it is affectionately called – Musée d’art et d’histoire du judaïsme

The exhibition  – Angels and Demons: beliefs and magical practices – is as its name tells us.

It is about the beliefs and magical practices in the Jewish world. It promises to be mightily interesting.

It starts on Wednesday, March 4 and runs through to Sunday, July 31.

Open from Sunday to Friday from 11 am to 6pm an entrance ticket costs €8

Next, from Wednesday, October 14 to Sunday, February 21, 2016 the museum will host an exhibition about Moses – Moses: Figures of a Hero.

Both these exhibitions are on my agenda.

Another Jeff Koons at the Pompidou.(Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

Another Jeff Koons at the Pompidou.(Copyright Marilyn Z.Tomlins)

I am sure that whichever date you will be in Paris you will find something in the above that you will love.

-0-

I just wish to add:

You need not fear to come to Paris.

Yes, I am referring to the Radical Islamist attacks Paris and its inhabitants have been victim to and which have claimed the lives of 17 of us. May those innocents rest in peace.

 

 

Slogan created by Joachim Roncin

Slogan created by Joachim Roncin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marilyn Z. Tomlins

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