#ArtGuide – What to see in #Paris this March (and in 2017)

Cy Twombly at Centre Pompidou

Paris. We all know it is the city of Love.

However, you can always count on the most romantic city in the world for good kick-ass Art exhibitions, too. *artemporary has selected a bunch you should definitely not miss this month — or year.

Paysages Mystiques – De Monet à Emily Carr at Musée d’Orsay

Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), Le Semeur, 1888. Amsterdam, Van Gogh Museum. © Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

In collaboration with Toronto’s ‘Art Gallery of Ontario’, the Musée d’Orsay’s exhibition proposes a journey through the mystical aspect of the symbolist landscapes, featuring works from Gauguin, Klimt, Monet, van Gogh and Emily Carr. C’est maquifique! 

Where: Musée d’Orsay, 1 rue de la legion d’Honneur, Paris ♦ When: until June 25, 2017

Eli Lotar at Jeu de Paume

Eli Lotar, exhibition overview at Jeu de Paume (pic courtesy of the museum)

Eli Lotar, Untitled, [Lisbonne], 1931, vintage silver gelatin print, 40 x 30 cm, gift of M. Jean-Pierre Marchand 2009, Centre Pompidou collection, Paris, MNAM-CCI © Eli Lotar
First time at Jeu de Paume and first time I encountered the work of Romanian-born photographer Eli Lotar (1905 – 1969). If also you, like me, never heard of this institution, here its mission in a nutshell: Jeu de Paume is an arts centre focusing on exhibiting and promoting all forms of mechanical and electronic imagery (photography, cinema, video, installation, web art, etc.).

The Eli Lotar Retrospective (1905 – 1969) allows visitors to discover the scope of Lotar’s work from a new light and reveals the role of this important figure in modern photography. This remarkable exhibition brings together over one hundred vintage prints taken from approximately fifteen different collections and international institutions, as well as a selection of a hundred documents illustrating the diversity of Lotar’s work. The exhibition is organised into five thematic sections but it does not follow a chronological order. The intimate and vintage gelatine silver prints will bring you back to a pre-digital era shown through the lenses of an artist with a flair and feel for human souls and beautiful places.

Where: Jeu de Paume, 1, place de la Concorde, 75008 Paris  ♦ When: until May 28, 2017

Cy Twombly at Centre Pompidou

Cy Twombly, “Nine Discourses on Commodus”, 1963
Cy Twombly, “Blooming”, 2001-2008

Hard to believe that American artist Cy Twombly (who passed away in 2011) was initially snobbed by his contemporaries.

Twombly once said: “My line is childlike but not childish”.  I think this is the best sentence to describe his practice. Because — beware! —  no… You could NOT have done that!

His gestural marks were scribbled and smeared on raw canvas or linen, infused with his deep interest in Roman and Greek mythology. Above I have picked my fav: two of the nine paintings dedicated to the bloodthirsty Roman emperor Commodus (161-192). With the childlike doodling of unsophisticated graffiti and his painterly frantic technique, Twombly was able to convey on canvas the climate of terror of the time, marked by executions and sheer violence (Gladiator, anyone??). This major retrospective includes around 140 works, including paintings, sculptures, drawings and photographs, providing a clear picture of an extraordinarily rich body of work which is both intellectual and sensual.

Visitors will be blissfully wandering in a chronological journey and will have the chance to see some iconic large-scale paintings and prints of looping, characterised by a unique level of frenetic energy, shown for the first time in Europe.

Where: Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004 Paris ♦ When: until April 24, 2017

Martial Raysse at kamel mennour

Martial Raysse at Galerie kamel mennour

The title of the exhibition is as long as forgettable, “Sera montrée une suite de dessins, études et modellos, issus d’une pratique peu usitée de nos jours, mais qui n’a rien perdu de son charme, ni de sa pertinence”.


However, this exhibition is everything but forgettable. From its unconventional hanging (it’s like binge-watching awesome artworks!) to the fab gallery space in the heart of rue Saint-André des Arts, everything screams blue-chip about this show. Plus, the beauty of the drawings is undeniable. For whoever did not know Martial Raysse, just know this: he had a major retrospective at Centre Pompidou just three years ago. Go do your homework!

Where: 47 rue Saint-André des Arts, Paris ♦ When: until April 22, 2017

Irving Penn at Grand Palais

One of the iconic portraits of Irving Penn at Le Grand Palais (pic courtesy of the museum)

2017 is the year that marks Irvin Penn’s 100th birthday (1917–2009). To celebrate this milestone, Grand Palais has partnered up with the Metropolitan Museum in New York. Considered one of the most influential photographers of the 20th century, Irving Penn photographed a host of important writers, visual artists, and cultural figures in his lifetime, including Pablo Picasso, Yves Saint Laurent, Audrey Hepburn, and Alfred Hitchcock. His fashion images were marked by their austerity, sophistication, and tonal subtleties.

You have few more months to enjoy the elegant simplicity and remarkable precision in the oeuvre of this American maestro – from his beautiful portraits to his sensitive still lifes.

Where:  GRAND PALAIS, GALERIES NATIONALES, 3 Avenue du Général Eisenhower, 75008 Paris ♦ When: until January 29, 2018

If you need an itinerary for your trip or the best combination for the weekend, please comment below and leave your email. I’ll get back to you with some suggestions.

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Have fun and happy cityscape planning!