Wander through the ages of art

TEXT: KATE HARVEY | PHOTOS © MUSÉE DE BEAUX ARTS

Founded in 1801 by Napoléon Bonaparte, over the next 12 months, the Musée de Beaux-Arts in Bordeaux will pay homage to important figures in the world of fine art.

The Liberté! Bordeaux 2019 cultural season this summer is set to be spectacular. With the past informing the present, the exhibition will be inspired by fathers of the Enlightenment such as Eugène Delacroix. As Museum Director Sophie Barthélémy explains: “Focusing on one of Delacroix’s most important works here, Greece on the Ruins of Missolonghi, artist Nikos Aliagas has curated a photographic collection for visitors to appreciate the original painting and discover Missolonghi, his hometown in Greece. There will be some 40 works on loan from the Louvre, some of our own pieces and some from Bordeaux’s Museum of Decorative Arts and Design and the exhibition will run from 19 June to 13 October.”

The Museum of Fine Arts has built a reputation as one of the finest art institutions in France: “The collection of over 9,000 works here in Bordeaux is regularly loaned-out worldwide; our Delacroix paintings have travelled to the Louvre and the MET in New York.” continues Barthélémy. “We are a member of Club 19, which brings together the oldest French museums of the nineteenth century. We also create links between French and American institutions within the FRAME initiative.”

Exciting partnerships will continue to flourish with the So British season in 2020, which will see masterpieces from the Louvre brought to Bordeaux for its British Stories exhibition. Bordeaux will then collaborate with its sister city of Bristol for the Absolutely Bizarre exhibition, featuring works from the Bristol School of Art.

“The permanent collection here is equally as impressive,” explains Barthélémy: “Spanning some five centuries, visitors can retrace the history of Western painting, and highlights include Renaissance masters Titian, Brueghel and Veronese, as well as painters such as Rubens, Corot, Redon, Marquet, Lhote and the kingpin of modernism, Picasso.”

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