Petit Palais, Paris
“Baroque during the Enlightenment. 18th Century Masterpieces in Paris Churches” from March 21 to July 16
French painting from the 18th-century tends to evoke the refinement of fete galante and portraiture rather than the rhetoric of great religious paintings. Yet outside of the exhibition period, churches in Paris were known as places to admire contemporary painting: the artists therefore put their best work on display. Parishes and congregations looking to renovate the capital’s churches were among the main sponsors of painters throughout history.
This exhibition aims to reveal the significance and the diversity of religious painting in Paris, from the Regency to the Revolution: from the heirs of the “Grand Siècle”, such as Largillierre and Restout; to disciples of rocaille, from Lemoine to Carle Van Loo; to the best of Neoclassicism, from Vien to David.
In a spectacular setting, centre stage is given to the works still conserved in Parisian churches, which have been restored for the occasion as part of an unprecedented campaign. In addition to immense altar paintings that revealed stunningly rich colours upon restoration, the Petit Palais’s galleries also feature sketches and other large paintings that were scattered among different museums, churches, and cathedrals throughout the country, offering visitors the opportunity to rediscover an entire segment of 18th-century painting at its peak. (Text: www.petitpalais.fr)
“From Watteau to David, the Horovitz Collection” from March 21 to July 09
Amassed over a period of three decades, it is the most important private collection of French drawings on the other side of the Atlantic.
It features a number of important works from Watteau, Boucher, Fragonard, to Greuze and David, while also providing an overview of all the notable artists of that time period, from Oudry to De Troy, Natoire to Bouchardon, Hubert Robert to Vincent, always at their best.
The exhibition is organised around a dozen thematic or monographic sections, offering insight into the creativity of a century bursting with stylistic renewal: from mythological painting to fete galante, nudes to landscapes, rocaille ornaments to the revolutionary period. Exhibition organised with the Horvitz Collection. (Text: www.petitpalais.fr)