The Courtauld Collection. A Vision for Impressionism
From 20 February to 17 June 2019
For the first time in 60 years, the collection of the British art patron and industrialist Samuel Courtauld returns to Paris. From 20 February to 17 June 2019, the Louis Vuitton Foundation will host some of the greatest paintings of the 20th century.
A Francophile, Samuel Courtauld had a keen interest in French culture and in particular its artistic trends. From 1923 to 1929, he built up a collection of paintings, of mainly French artists, and worked to popularize Impressionism and Post-Impressionism in the United Kingdom.
‘The Courtauld Collection: A Vision for Impressionism’ brings together a selection of around 110 works, including 60 paintings, sculptures, watercolours and sketches. These works include many masterpieces by Manet, Monet, Renoir, Degas, Toulouse-Lautrec, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Seurat, Cézanne, Turner and many others.
The exhibition first of all highlights the works of Cézanne and Seurat, two artists whose work Samuel Courtauld particularly appreciated. Works featured are versions of The Card Players, the Mont Sainte-Victoire with Large Pine by Cézanne and a collection of 14 works by Seurat, including the Young Woman Powdering Herself.
The exhibition also focuses on major works by Manet (A Bar at the Folies-Bergère and one of the versions of The Lunche on on the Grass), Monet (The Saint-Lazare Station), Renoir (The Theatre Box), Toulouse Lautrec (Jane Avril in the Entrance to the Moulin Rouge), Van Gogh (Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear and A Wheatfield with Cypresses), Gauguin (Nevermore and Te Rerioa) as well as 10 watercolours by Turner.
A landmark exhibition to discover at the impressive Fondation Louis Vuitton!
Creation of the Fondation Louis Vuitton
The project has taken some 13 years to carry out, but the result is spectacular. Right next to the Jardin d’Acclimatation, the brand new Fondation Louis Vuitton rises up in a cloud of impressive glass architecture designed by American architect Frank Gehry. The building resembles a ship in full sail and is located in the heart of the Bois de Boulogne.
Gehry, who designed the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, has succeeded in creating a building that stands 46 metres high. Like many of his creations, the construction has neither a facade nor a roof in the traditional sense of the terms. It is composed more of flowing shapes that envelope the interior spaces designed to showcase cultural collections and exhibitions. The Californian architect used 6,000 m² of curved glass panels attached to a steel frame to provide the covering. A team of architects worked intensively on the feasibility of the project, registering some thirty patents in the process!
Gehry said that « when Bernard Arnault suggested that he come and meet him in Paris, he told him nothing at first. He took him to the Jardin d’acclimatiation and then spoke of his project. (Gehry who had lived in Paris in the 1950s knew the city but not that particular place). He said that he felt quite emotional thinking about French writer Proust walking along the pathways there. He said that he realized then that this was a historic place ».
12,000 m² devoted to art
The LVMH group, which supports artistic creation, now has a first-class flagship with a surface area of 12,000 m². Some of this is used to show a selection of works from the Foundation’s collection and from Bernard Arnault’s private collection. In addition to this ‘permanent’ collection, the Foundation also hosts two temporary exhibitions every year as well as musical events in the auditorium.