La Maison Gainsbourg

On the wall, a photograph of a Milanese cabbage, a sort of artifact that pays homage to Claude Lalanne’s L’Homme à la tête de chou, which inspired Serge Gainsbourg in 1976 for the title of his eponymous album. This sculpture which was always a bit of his double and which can be found in the center of his house. The place, which has become cult since his death in 1991, has remained identical, timeless, preserved as it is by Charlotte Gainsbourg, who had long wanted to make it a museum.

On the ground floor of this universe imagined by Serge Gainsbourg and the English decorator Andrée Higgins, who over the years has entered the collective imagination, we discover a large room with walls hung in black like the rest of the house. It was here that he worked, composed, entertained, lived a large part of his days and nights. The entire world of the famous dandy is there, before our eyes: musical instruments, photographs, manuscripts and works of art come together in a clever mix. Dali or Klee dialogue with Chopin, Rouget de Lisle or even Bardot. Collections of rare or unusual objects accumulated over the years. Gainsbourg was a collector, but above all he kept everything, and each thing, once it had found its place, never changed.

Upstairs, portraits of the women in his life: Jane, Brigitte, Catherine, Marylin… tiny, overloaded pieces: a library of rare books, first editions or collections of poetry, the complete works of the esthete Joris-Karl Huysmans. The dolls’ room, Jane Birkin’s, and the composer’s room, always black. In the bathroom, the sublime crystal chandelier, but also Jane’s perfumes which have not changed, as if they had always waited for her return…..

Opposite, at 14 rue de Verneuil, Charlotte Gainsbourg wanted to create a museum in homage to her father: a space dedicated to permanent exhibitions and another to temporary exhibitions. In the permanent tour, eight chronological chapters immerse us in the incredible life of the composer. 450 original, emblematic objects, manuscripts, clothing or jewelry behind windows, and opposite, screens broadcasting a selection of photographic, cinematographic, television or radio archives, some of which are unpublished and which remind us of the immense heritage left by the artist.

Still at 14, a bar, prettily named Le Gainsbarre, not only in homage to Serge Gainsbourg’s dilapidated years, but also to those, at the very beginning of his career, when he played the piano in the cabarets of the Left Bank.

Like the artist, Le Gainsbarre will also live from early morning until the end of the night, offering lunches, dinners, but also Afternoon Tea, then piano bar. From live concerts to film screenings, the place should obviously become unmissable.

Maison Gainsbourg

5 bis rue de Verneuil 75007 Paris

Musée Gainsbourg

14 rue de Verneuil 75007 Paris


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Josef Hoffmann / Ettore Sottsass


By exhibiting around forty exceptional pieces by Josef Hoffmann and Ettore Sottsass, Romain Morandi has chosen to confront two major figures in the history of architecture and design. While Josef Hoffmann (1870-1956) is considered one of the fathers of the modern movement, Ettore Sottsass (1917-2007) was one of the first to question its foundations. There is, however, a deep link and a true filiation between these two creators of genius: it was driven by the same refusal of academicism that Sottsass undertook, at the turn of the 1950s, a long work of deconstruction of the principles erected by Hoffmann at the end of the 19th century. Where Hoffmann spoke out against official salon art, Sottsass rejects the impoverished language of a modernism locked in its own codes. Half a century apart, both, in their own way, decided to “secession”, turning the history of design and decorative arts upside down.

In 1896, upon leaving the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, where he was a student of the great architect Otto Wagner (like Ettore Sottssas’ father), Josef Hoffmann spent a year in Italy. On his return he founded La Sécession with Josef Maria Olbrich, an association of artists and architects whose objective is to bring together and renew the applied arts by creating a total art (Gesamkunstwerk). They thus intend to develop a new form of artistic expression that is “spiritual, modern and authentic” applied to all fields of creation.

Our art is not a fight of modern artists against the ancients, but the promotion of the arts against peddlers who pose as artists and who have a commercial interest in not letting art flourish. Commerce or art, this is the issue of our Secession. It is not a question of an aesthetic debate, but of a confrontation between two states of mind“, we can read in the first issue of the magazine Ver Sacrum, official organ for disseminating the Secession as a Manifesto.

More than half a century later, the actors and the issues have changed but the deep conviction of Ettore Sottsass remains the same: it is not a question of refusing the part of heritage inherent in any creative act but of defending the idea that art and creation have a role and a power to transform society.

Although his first creations were anchored in a grammar inherited from the modern movement, Sottsass gradually made a stylistic shift. It was during the 1960s and 1970s that he laid the foundations of his formal vocabulary, which led him, at the beginning of the 1970s, to join the Anti-Design movement, the slayer of consumerism and mass production. It is in this perspective that the famous exhibition “Italy: The New Domestic Landscape” was held in 1972 at the MoMA in New York which brought together, in addition to his production, works by Mario Bellini, Joe Colombo, Ugo La Pietra, Gaetano Pesce or Superstudio.

For Josef Hoffmann, an object must be “aesthetically beautiful” but also “morally good”. its quality does not reside only in the work of the artist’s hand, it is also expressed in the clarity of the formal expression and the integrity of the workmanship. According to him, “under certain conditions a reasonable mass-produced item can be created using machines, but it must nevertheless unconditionally bear the imprint of workmanship.” He worked closely with Gustav Siegel, one of his former students, who headed the workshops of the Jacob and Josef Khon company, which gradually established itself as one of the leading furniture manufacturers in Austria -Hungary. Hoffmann also uses certain models imagined by Siegel in his projects, blurring the boundaries of their collaboration. Together they will participate in forging the creator-editor couple, thus contributing to the advent of design in its current sense. The “Sitzmachine” armchair (Literally “Machine for sitting”) presented for the first time at the Milan Fair in April 1906 constitutes one of the most striking examples of the collaboration between Josef Hoffmann and J&J Kohn.

From the start of his career, Ettore Sottsass has also always worked jointly with artisans, allowing him to continue his work of experimentation on shapes and materials. From his friendship with Aldo Londi, the artistic director of Bitossi e Figli, an extremely sophisticated production was born; Sottsass revisits traditional Tuscan ceramics with more modern decorative motifs, covered with metallic oxides, platinum or lava. With the jeweler Gem from Milan, he offers pieces combining lapis lazuli, coral or turquoise with gold. Finally, with the cabinetmakers from Poltronova, he combines ceramic, aluminum or lacquer with traditional walnut. The Italian architect’s impressive production is always the result of a close relationship and deep respect between the creator and his publisher.

Whatever the field of intervention (architecture, furniture, lighting, fire arts, textiles, brassware), the aesthetic defined by Josef Hoffmann is based on a geometric ideal. Described as “proto-cubist”, his creations open, through their purity, the path to functionalism. From the end of the 19th century, Hoffmann developed a system based on the line, the square, the circle and their volumetric variation, the cube, the block or the sphere. The line finds materiality in the bars of the chairs, tables or benches. We find the circle in the work of curved wood, which gives sensuality to the most voluminous seats and facilitates their integration into the space. The only concession made to the ornament, if it did not participate in the structure of the object, the sphere intervenes as a punctuation. The square emphasizes the synthetic character of both the furniture and the architecture. Worked in pattern, its repetition in solids or voids allows to structure the composition of the objects.

Far from refusing the Viennese aesthetic heritage, Sottsass appropriates it and revisits its key elements. It was during his collaboration with Poltronova (1958-1974) that he developed his own formal language. He abandons the organic forms dear to “Good design” in favor of simple geometric figures, which now constitute the fundamental principle of his plastic expression.

The different parts of a piece of furniture are thus broken down into autonomous volumes, highlighted by a color, a material or a pattern, to which equal importance is given. These are then redistributed by playing scale ratios or repeated rhythmically. The color (red in the first place) promotes “greater sensory reading”, before the use of patterns (mainly the grid or the stripe) becomes recurrent; the vertical lines that he places on his furniture, symbols according to him of calm and serenity, act as signage. For the lacquer process, Sottsass substitutes a new printed laminate from Abet Laminatti which he applies to his famous Superbox cabinets and then to storage furniture. At the end of the 1970s, Ettore Sottsass definitively broke with functionalism. He joined Alchymia, then founded the Memphis group in 1981. Through its liberating and experimental vision of design, this movement, which favors the symbolic and emotional dimension of objects, confirms the bankruptcy of modern ideologies. Memphis has the effect of a bomb.

September 7 – October 15, 2023

Galerie Romain Morandi

18 rue Guénégaud


Claude et François-Xavier Lalanne at MAD

In 2021, the Museum of Decorative Arts benefited from the entry into its collections of 16 works and 38 drawings by Claude (1925-2019) and François-Xavier (1927-2008) Lalanne thanks to an exceptional donation. This set was added to a collection already representative of their work with the iconic “Rhinocrétaire” (1966) by François-Xavier offered to the museum in 2013 by GRoW @ Annenberg, thanks to the support of Regina and Gregory Annenberg Weingarten.

The Museum, which largely contributed to the recognition of their work with the 2010 exhibition, decided to dedicate a room of the permanent exhibition to this couple of artists who, from the sixties, defended a surrealist conception of furniture . With the Tuileries as a backdrop, François-Xavier’s bestiary will dialogue with Claude’s hybridizations. The hippopotamus bathtub in blue resin, the “Mouche” toilet in ceramic and rosewood by François-Xavier will sit alongside the “Choupatte” and “L’Homme à la tête de chou” by Claude. This will be an opportunity to discover the jubilant tone of their atypical work guided by humor and the unique use of materials.

Unclassifiable sculptors united in the eyes of the public, the couple formed by Claude (1925-2019) and François-Xavier (1927-2008) Lalanne are known for having made flora and fauna the support of their creation. After their meeting in 1952, they developed two distinct but complementary works. Making unique use of materials, their common point is humor and non-conformism. Playing with the hierarchy of the arts, they offer new uses for their sculptures and nature inspires them with furniture, jewelry and cutlery.


107 Rue de Rivoli 75001 Paris

01 44 55 57 50

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Gertrude Stein et Pablo Picasso

A major exhibition on the story of an extraordinary friendship between two icons of the 20th century, Pablo Picasso and Gertrude Stein. The exhibition spans a century of art, poetry, music and theater through great figures of art.

A writer should write with his eyes and a painter paint with his ears.” Gerstrude Stein

A phrase that could characterize the fertile dialogue between the poet Gerstrude Stein and the painter Pablo Picasso. A friendship that was formed around their respective work, the founders of Cubism and the literary and pictorial avant-gardes of the 20th century.

Gertrude Stein, an American Jewish immigrant, settled in Paris shortly after the arrival of Pablo Picasso in 1901. Their position as foreigners, with approximately mastery of French, and their marginality founded their belonging to Parisian bohemia and their artistic freedom. Their friendship was sealed by the portrait of Stein that Picasso decided to paint in 1905, shortly after their meeting. This painting will require no less than 90 pose sessions and will forever fix the features of the poet and patron. United by the same fascination with Cézanne, the painter was inspired by the Portrait of the Woman with a Fan hanging in Stein’s apartment, rue de Fleurus. Gertrude also places the birth of her writing under the aegis of this pictorial work.

As her friendship with Picasso deepened, Gertrude Stein played an increasing role in painting purchases. Around 1907-08, she and her brother acquired a set of fourteen studies for the Demoiselles d’Avignon and the Nude à la draperie, testing to a real commitment to the painter’s side as he approached the difficulty and then little understood phase of his pre -cubist painting. It was at this time that works as significant as the Nude with a Towel or the Three Women appeared on the walls of the Rue de Fleurus.

Building her writing on the flatness of a continuous present, an unfolded, deconstructed syntax, which plays on the orality of repetition, Gertrude Stein began her great fresco, The Making of Americans, in 1910. She wrote portraits, notably those of Matisse and Picasso, a diptych published in Stieglitz’s magazine, Camera Work, in 1912, which were perceived as Cubist texts, like the works of Picasso that she collected. Crowned with her status as protector of the arts, since the war she has been surrounded by young Americans who come to train in the artistic capital. It was she who named the young writers who visited her, Ernest Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald and Sherwood Anderson, “Lost Generation”.

The exhibition highlights the posterity of the two artists through great figures of art: Henri Matisse, Juan Gris, Marcel Duchamp, Jasper Johns, Andy Warhol, Bruce Nauman, Carl Andre, Joseph Kosuth, Hanne Darboven, Glenn Ligon , John Cage, Steve Reich, Bob Wilson, Philip Glass… 28 works centered around the Cubist years and the Demoiselles d’Avignon, as well as the archives of the patron and poet.

The American posterity of this dialogue forms the second part of the exhibition (the “American Moment”) with emblematic works from Steinian writing, from the 1950s to the present day: from the Living Theater and the musical, plastic and neo-dada and fluxus theatrical works, through minimal art around language and the circle, to neo-conceptual and critical works.

September 13, 2023 – January 28, 2024


9 rue de Vaugirard 75006 Paris

01 40 13 62 00



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Naples à Paris

Reaffirming the importance of collaboration between European museum institutions, the Louvre Museum has entered into a partnership of unprecedented scope with the Capodimonte Museum for the year 2023. Former hunting residence of the Bourbon rulers, the palace (the Reggia in Italian) now houses one of the largest museums in Italy and one of the most important art galleries in Europe, both in number and in quality. exceptional works preserved. Capodimonte is one of the only museums on the peninsula whose collections make it possible to present all the schools of Italian painting. It also houses the second drawing cabinet in Italy after that of the Uffizi as well as a remarkable set of porcelains.

Around sixty of the greatest masterpieces of the Neapolitan museum will be exhibited in three different places in the Louvre, the Salon Carré, the Grande Galerie and the Rosa room. The desire of the two museums is to see the emblematic masterpieces of Naples mingle with those of the Louvre, in a truly exceptional presentation: the combination of the two collections will offer visitors for six months a unique insight into Italian painting from the 15th century. in the 17th century, also allowing a new vision of both the Louvre and Capodimonte collections.

Thirty-three paintings by Capodimonte, among the greatest of Italian painting, will enter into dialogue with the collections of the Louvre (works by Titian, Caravaggio, Carracci, Guido Reni to name but a few), or complete them by allowing the presentation of schools little or not represented – in particular, of course, the singular Neapolitan school, with artists with dramatic and expressive power such as Jusepe de Ribera, Francesco Guarino or Mattia Preti.

It will also be an opportunity to discover the moving Crucifixion by Masaccio, a major artist of the Florentine Renaissance but absent from the Louvre’s collections, a large historical painting by Giovanni Bellini, The Transfiguration, of which the Louvre has no equivalent or three more of Parmigianino’s most magnificent paintings, including the famous and enigmatic Antéa. The confrontation of these works with the Correggios of the Louvre certainly promises to be one of the highlights of this meeting.

The Capodimonte collection is the result of a unique history in Italian collections, which largely explains the diversity of the works presented there. Before the unification of Italy (the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies was attached to it in 1861), three dynasties played an essential role in the constitution of this impressive ensemble: the Farnese, the Bourbons and the Bonaparte-Murat.

Bringing together such important paintings as the Portrait of Pope Paul III Farnese with his Nephews by Titian and the Portrait of Giulio Clovio by Greco, spectacular sculptures and art objects, which are all exceptional loans – including the Cofanetto Farnese, the most precious and refined of Renaissance goldsmith works with Benvenuto Cellini’s Salt Shaker of Francis I, and Filippo Tagliolini’s extraordinary biscuit, La Chute des Géants – the exhibition in the Chapel room will allow visitors to discover the richness of this collection, reflection and witness of the different golden ages of the Kingdom of Naples.

Rich in more than 30,000 works, the Cabinet of Drawings and Prints of Capodimonte owes part of its treasures to Fulvio Orsini, humanist, great scholar and librarian of Cardinal Alessandro Farnese, known as the Grand Cardinal and grandson of Pope Paul III . Orsini constituted the first collection in the world to consider study drawings and preparatory drawings. This new and revolutionary approach will make him acquire four fabulous cartoons which were then considered to be the hand of Raphael and Michelangelo. Moses before the Burning Bush by Raphael and the Group of Soldiers by Michelangelo are preparatory to the decorations of the Vatican and today recognized as rare autograph works. The cartoon of the Madonna of Divine Love and that of Venus and Cupid are considered works executed in the immediate entourage of the two masters.

These extremely rare works will be presented at the Louvre in dialogue with famous cartoons kept in the Cabinet des Dessins du Louvre, such as Saint Catherine by Raphaël or the cartoon of La Moderation by Giulio Romano, Raphaël’s closest pupil and collaborator, recently restored. An ambitious cultural program will give this invitation, beyond the rooms of the museum, the dimensions of a true Neapolitan season in Paris.


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Ron Mueck

The Cartier Foundation invites the Australian sculptor Ron Mueck to exhibit a set of works never before shown in France alongside emblematic works from his career. the Foundation is therefore pursuing a long-term dialogue with this artist whom it revealed to the French public in 2005 and whose works are as rare as expected.

This third exhibition bears witness to the recent evolution of Ron Mueck’s practice. The scale and craftsmanship of the monumental installation Mass marks a new milestone in the artist’s career. This work, commissioned by the National Gallery of Victoria (Melbourne, Australia) in 2017, is the largest he has ever produced. Composed of one hundred gigantic human skulls, Mass is reconfigured by the artist according to the space he has available for each presentation. It offers a fascinating physical and psychic experience that leads us to contemplate the fundamental notions of human existence. Its title alone gives an idea of the polysemy of the work. The English word “mass”, meaning both a heap, a heap, a crowd but also a mass, is a source of interpretations specific to each visitor. The iconography of the skull itself is ambiguous. If the history of art associates it with the brevity of human life, it is also omnipresent in popular culture.

For the artist, “the human skull is a complex object, a powerful, graphic icon that one immediately identifies. Familiar and strange at the same time, it repels as much as it intrigues. It is impossible to ignore, subconsciously capturing our attention. The skulls are presented as a group, a sum of individuals that imposes itself on the visitor. In this, Mass differs from the previous works of Ron Mueck who had, until then, always represented the human being in his individuality.

Also exhibited for the first time in France, Dead Weight (2021), a nearly two-ton cast iron skull, contrasts with his usually naturalistic works. The traces of the molding of this sculpture remain, the artist having voluntarily left the marks of its manufacture and the raw nature of the material to speak for themselves.

The exhibition also unveils a spectacular sculpture representing a group of menacing dogs, created especially for the occasion, which Ron Mueck was already feeding into the project when he was preparing his monographic exhibition at the Fondation Cartier in 2013.

Three emblematic works from the 2000s are also presented. For Baby (2000), a tiny sculpture of a newborn baby boy, Ron Mueck modeled an image found in a medical textbook showing a baby held aloft by its feet just minutes after delivery. . At the antipodes of the installation Mass, an evocation of the post-mortem body, this meticulous representation of the first moments of life attracts attention just as intensely. By reversing the original image and hanging the sculpture on the wall like a crucifix, the artist first presents his work as a religious icon. But on closer observation, the visitor is transfixed by the almost insolent gaze of the baby.

Man in a boat (2002) depicts a particularly mysterious scene. A man whose arms hide his nudity is seated at the prow of a long boat and leans forward, with a questioning or scrutinizing gaze. As often with Ron Mueck, this character seems to “withdraw or drift into inner states that are almost inaccessible to us”, in the words of art critic Justin Paton.

With A Girl (2006), the visitor finds himself face to face with a gigantic newborn, who takes his first look at the world. Stained with traces of blood, the umbilical cord still present, her body is still marked by the experience of childbirth. The artist plays on an impressive distortion of scale to evoke both the miracle and the ordeal of birth, a forgotten yet fundamental moment for each of us.

June 8 – November 5, 2023


261 boulevard Raspail 75014 Paris


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Des Cheveux et des Poils

The Museum of Decorative Arts presents an exhibition dedicated to hair and body hair in the Western world. This original project, curated by Denis Bruna, chief curator in the fashion and textile department, continues the exploration of fashion and the representation of the body. After “The Mechanics of Below” (2013), “Proper Dress Required!” (2017) and “Walk and Gait” (2019), “Hair and Body Hair” shows how hairstyle and the arrangement of human hair have been involved for centuries in the construction of appearances.

Through more than 600 works, from the 15th century to the present day, we explore the themes inherent in the history of hairdressing, but also questions related to facial and body hair. The professions and know-how of yesterday and today are highlighted with their emblematic figures: Léonard Autier (Marie-Antoinette’s favorite hairdresser), Monsieur Antoine, the Carita sisters, Alexandre de Paris and more recently the studio hairdressers.

Big names in contemporary fashion such as Alexander McQueen, Martin Margiela or Josephus Thimister are also present with their spectacular creations made from this singular material that is hair.

April 5 – September 17, 2023


107 rue de Rivoli 75001 Paris