Experience the romance of Paris in Bendigo with these exciting events

Exclusive to Bendigo Art Gallery, Paris: Impressions of Life 1880 – 1925 takes visitors on a journey through the lively and picturesque streets of the French capital.

The busy banks of the Seine, bustling marketplaces, grand boulevards, idyllic public gardens, and the heady atmosphere of bohemian Montmartre are brought to life in more than 170 works of art and artisan objects. From the renowned collection of the Musée Carnavalet, the iconic museum of the history, Paris: Impressions of Life 1880 – 1925 is coming to Bendigo, an exhibition that reflects on an effervescent period of French history that continues to capture the global imagination.

As the 19th century drew close, Paris courted the world’s attention, projecting a confident vision of a flourishing modern city. Amidst great political and social change, the new century brought economic prosperity and an air of optimism. The Eiffel Tower, the centrepiece of the Universal Exhibition of 1889, rose high above the skyline. It was a feat of engineering that symbolised the spirit of progress and industrial innovation on which Paris prided itself.

More than 170 works of art are on display © Bendigo Art Gallery

Journey through Belle Époque Paris

The river Seine, the city’s backbone, remained an important hub of industry and trade. A focal point of city planning, with its grand bridges, that connected neighbourhoods on the Left and Right banks. Mass urban development projects created expansive boulevards like the Champs Élysées. Carefully landscaped public gardens were established for leisure and health.

An emergent wealthy class sought luxury goods, entertainment, and leisure in the city. Increasing affluence fuelled consumerism, inspiring colourful advertisements that added to the visual spectacle of the streetscape. The blossoming theatre and cabaret scene, charged with the progressive and pleasure-seeking aura of the time, attracted people from all social classes.

In Montmartre, the crucible of the avant-garde, artists and intellectuals mingled and drew endless inspiration from the radically changing city. The spirit of modernity, which animated the city, galvanised a generation of artists. Experimenting with new aesthetic and expressive possibilities and forged entirely new artistic movements.

Paris: Impressions of Life 1880 – 1925

Across seven themed pathways Paris: Impressions of Life 1880 – 1925 presents artisan street signs, historic couture, decorative arts, and everyday ephemera. Alongside paintings by artists including Jean Béraud, the pre-eminent painter of Parisian life in the Belle Époque, Maurice Utrillo and Paul Signac, pioneer of the artistic technique of pointillism. As well as vibrant graphic prints by Toulouse-Lautrec and his contemporaries. Together, they offer diverse insights into the events, locations, and everyday encounters that have come to define this dynamic period. Making Paris one of the world’s most famed and alluring cities.

The Musée Carnavalet is the oldest municipal museum in Paris. Founded by Baron George-Eugène Haussmann in 1866 to document the city’s history and the unique character of Paris during a period of intensive modernisation.

Occupying a number of historic mansions in the Marais district, the museum houses a vast collection of over 620,000 works of art and artefacts. Following a significant five-year renovation, The Musée Carnavalet re-opened to the public in 2021 with nearly 4,000 square metres of exhibitions exploring life in Paris from the Mesolithic period to the present day. Now you can experience a taste of this tantalising collection right here in Australia.

Paris: Impressions of Life 1880 – 1925
16 March to 14 July 2024
Tickets via the website
Open daily, including public holidays

Experience the romance of Paris in Bendigo with these exciting events and experiences

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