Springtime exhibitions 2016 in Provence
The trees and flowers are blossoming, winter coats are being stored away, the heat is preparing its comeback, there's no doubt about it, spring is here! And, in the spring, it is not only flowers that bloom, but exhibitions too! For traditional or modern art lovers, for painting, photography or comic strip enthusiasts, or simply for people just wanting to have a look, Provence offers a dense programme of exhibitions for this new season.
This spring in Provence museum, you will be able to see works by some leading names in the world of painting with the screening of Chagall in Baux-de-Provence, the Picasso exhibition at MuCEM in Marseilles, the Turner retrospective in Aix-en-Provence, or Van Gogh in Arles. But it will also be possible to discover some of the leading artists in the world of comic strips, African art, the Provencal school, kinetic art and contemporary art. The works are exhibited all over Provence in museums, monuments or on the streets for a genuine journey through time and genres.
For your weekend outings and family holidays, with friends or on your own, here is a brief overview of the exhibitions not be missed at any cost, from Marseilles exhibitions to Aix-en-Provence exhibitions and the Alpilles, as far as Arles.
1. Chagall, a midsummer night's dream
Carrières de Lumières, Baux de Provence – Until 8 January
Enter into the beauty of the Carrières de Lumières, an exceptional site with a unique and original character. The show screened on the stone walls will transport you in music into the colourful worlds of Chagall and the universal themes considered, such as love, family, roots, landscape, circus, war, and more. A journey through the major stages in Marc Chagall's creations. Also, take a look at the exhibition devoted to Marc Chagall's "Circus" at the Yves Brayer museum.
2. A genius without a pedestal: Picasso and folk art and traditions
Mucem, Marseilles – From 27 April to 29 August
Discover MuCEM's summer exhibition. This retrospective offers an insight into how Picasso filled his work with influences from folk art and traditions. The exhibition's path will mirror the artist's masterpieces, some of which have not yet been seen, with reference objects from MuCEM's rich collections. Explore how Picasso appropriated the know-how of craftsmen, how to work with ceramic, metal and wood.
3. Turner and colour
Caumont Art Centre, Aix-en-Provence - From 4 May to 18 September.
The Caumont Art Centre gives centre stage to "The painter of light", William Turner, considered to be the pioneer of Impressionism. The vibrant and original colours explode, tested in the form of paintings or watercolours. This exhibition retraces the subtle changes in the painter's work over time and with his successive journeys, from London to Yorkshire, France to Italy.
André Masson - Antille, 1943, musée Cantini, Marseille ©Claude Almodovar et Michel Vialle © ADAGP, Paris 2015
TURNER William (1775 - 1851) Calais Sands at Low Water, Poissards Collecting Bait, exh. 1830 - Oil on canvas, 730 x 1070 mm. Bury Art Museum © Bury Art Museum, Greater Manchester UK
4. Van Gogh in Provence: Modernised tradition
Van Gogh Foundation, Arles – From 14 May to 11 September
This 3rd Van Gogh retrospective in Arles is of great importance as much in terms of the number of canvases exhibited as by their dialogue in the space, which has been redesigned especially for the event. 31 works offer the opportunity to understand Van Gogh's painting through the traditional genres he constantly updated. They will be exhibited alongside the work of the contemporary British painter, Glenn Brown.
5. André Masson: From Marseilles to American exile
Cantini Museum, Marseilles – Until 24 July
A leading figure of surrealist painting, André Masson was one of the artists saved by the American Varian Fry in Marseilles in 1940. André Masson's children have decided to loan a collection of the artist's works to the Cantini Museum, some of which, to date, have only been exhibited very rarely. A project placed under the dual sign of the experience of war and the discovery of a lyrical and magical dimension of what is real.
6. Camoin in his light
Granet Museum, Aix-en-Provence – From 11 June to 2 October
You will pass through the different key moment of art history and the paths followed by Camoin, a fauve painter born in Marseilles. The exhibitions offers the chance to discover his work from his time at Gustave Moreau's workshop, his meeting with Cézanne, his fauvism years, to his stay in Morocco with Matisse and his vision of the Mediterranean, dazzling and mild, vivid and contrasting.
« Van Gogh in Provence: Modernised tradition », Van Gogh Foundation in Arles
« 13th Rencontres du 9ème Art - The 2016 Comic Strip Festival » in Aix-en-Provence
Réattu Museum, Arles – Until 5 July
The Museum of Fine Arts in Arles offers visitors a thematic approach devoted to portraits. Discover all aspects of the genre: official portrait, portraits of celebrities, social and ethnological portrait, documentary, scientific, family portrait, self-portrait, fictional portrait, and more. About a hundred photographic works by different artists are exhibited there.
8. 13th Rencontres du 9ème Art - The 2016 Comic Strip Festival
In Aix-en-Provence – From 1 April to 21 May
In Aix-en-Provence, comic strips are an art form and the Rencontres du 9e Art is a festival. A genuine graphic circuit, the exhibitions are installed throughout the town. Museums, galleries, art schools, cafés, bookshops around the town play host for two months to the unique styles of the authors to be discovered around the various cocktail events and workshops.
Vasarely Museum, Aix-en-Provence – From 2 June to 2 October
The MultipliCité exhibition presents the career of Vasarely, a major stakeholder of kinetic art, from the Hungary of his childhood to Provence, the place where he chose to live. It offers an original circuit through his work which involves the spectator by creating the illusion of space and movement. Today, Vasarely embodies modernity, he is famous around the world and influences digital and urban art.
10. Cody Choi : Culture cuts
Museum of Contemporary Art, Marseilles – From 8 April to 28 August
In the frame of the Year of Korea in France, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MAC) is presenting an exhibition by the artist Cody Choi. For the first time in France, it brings together paintings, photographs of performances, sculptures and installations by this cosmopolitan artist. A body of work which highlights the connections and differences with American and European creation.
« Baga: Art of Guinea », Museum of African, Oceanian and Amerindian Art
Pablo Picasso, Le Matador, 1970 © RMN-Grand Palais (Musée Picasso de Paris)/ean-Gilles Berizzi _ Succession Picasso 2016
« Cody Choi: Culture cuts », Museum of Contemporary Art
11. Baga: Art of Guinea
Museum of African, Oceanian and Amerindian Art, Marseilles - From 13 May to 18 September
The exhibition of about 20 masks, statues, drums and seats on loan from the Barbier-Muellier Museum in Geneva is exceptional. It shows the great beauty of the artistic creation of the Bagas, a people from Guinea, who inspired Picasso, Giacometti and Moore, among others. The Vieille Charité in Marseilles, along with the Quai Branly in Paris, is the only museum in France that offers a permanent exhibition of African works of art.
12. Raphaël Ponson : Light and Softness
Regards de Provence Museum, Marseilles – Until 28 august
The Regards de Provence museum, honours to the mariniste and the landscape painter, Raphaël Ponson, known as the inventor of the Marseille’s Calanques and for its lighting effects on rocks, waves and in the sky. Fire, Earth, Water and Air are gathered. About sixty paintings and watercolors stemming from the collection of the Foundation Regards de Provence, from museums and private collectors are revealed to the Museum Looks of Provence.
13. Loubon, Grésy, Guigou or the Marseilles School
Ziem Museum, Martigues – Until 5 June
The Marseilles School brings together a group of artists who love Provence, its wild beauty, its rugged landscapes. Far from gentle classicism, they reveal a certain strength, heat, density, exaltation and sometimes even violence. This movement made a lasting impression on the evolution of the pictoral landscape in France in the middle of the 19th century.
14. A view of Belgian post-war modern art
Estrine Museum, Saint-Rémy de Provence - Until 5 June
The exhibition presents a selection of works from the private collection of Caroline & Maurice Verbaet. Paintings, sculptures and graphic works offer visitors the chance to discover an invigorating form of Belgian art through the remarkable and keen eyes of the collectors. Described as "the small country of big collectors", Belgium is packed with an astonishing and high quality heritage.
« A view of Belgian post-war modern art » , Estrine Museum
« Loubon, Grésy, Guigou or the Marseilles School », Ziem Museum
« MultipliCité », Vasarely Foundation
Paints, sculptures photos … Find all the Provence exhibitions in Bouches-du-Rhône’s museums and art galleries.
-Simulation #3 Marc Chagall Abraham et les trois anges, 1960-66, détail / Le Songe de Jacob, 1960-66, détail / Le Roi David, 1951, détail / La Lutte de Jacob et de l’ange, 1960-66, détail / Le sacrifice d’Isaac, 1960-66, détail / Adam et Eve chassés du Paradis, 1961, détailt/ Le Paradis, 1961, détail / Noé et l’arc-en-ciel, 1961-1966, détail - Musée national Marc Chagall, Nice - © ADAGP, Paris 2016 © Gianfranco Iannuzzi
Time to eat outside
Picnics are a great way to escape from routine and spend some quality time with friends, family or your partner. Whether you opt for the seaside, a park or vineyard, they are an ode to simple pleasures and sharing.
Time to row
Fancy grabbing your paddle and swishing off to the translucent waters of En-Vau fjord? Test your biceps with a kayak tour of the myriad of fjords dotted along the coast between Cassis and Marseille.