Space Van Gogh

Arles - Cultural place

Garden open and can be accessed freely during the day
Former Hôtel-Dieu, also called Hôtel-Dieu-Saint-Esprit.
Built in the 16th and 17th centuries, the vast quadrilateral of the Hôtel-Dieu has a two-fold context: a period of prosperity and modernisation by the town on the one hand, and a well affirmed tradition as a local hospital on the other hand. Three wings were raised in 1835 to open up new rooms following a serious cholera epidemic. At the end of the 19th century, the hospital received a remarkable guest, Vincent Van Gogh, who depicted the building in several of his paintings. The establishment was open until the 1970s-1980s. The disused hospital then underwent major renovation work to turn it into a broad-ranging cultural and academic site. During this time, excavations in the basement unearthed extremely interesting remains which added to the knowledge of the town all the way back to protohistory.
The buildings form a quadrilateral around a garden. The ground floor opens onto outside via arches which border a gallery walkway which is also present on the second floor. The façades are severe, with small openings, in keeping with the model for hospitals at the time; hospitals were closed places which must not transmit dangerous 'miasmas' to the outside world. The entire building was topped with wooden timbers (pieces fitted together to support the roof) and trusses (horizontal beams which support the oblique beams on the sides of the roof). The ground floor of the west building housed the ancillary services, including the kitchen fitted with a huge fireplace, the laundry, the linen room and other utilitarian areas. The main entrance to the hospital was on what is now rue Dulau. The solid wood door, rebuilt in 1587 by Antoine Pons, was made of pitch-pine (blend of pine species from North America). It is surrounded by two fluted Doric columns and topped with a triangular fronton. Above it, an inscription commemorates the date on which the building was constructed. This portal is listed as a Historic Monument.
BACKGROUND
In 1542, the Archbishop of Arles decided to close the town's 32 charitable establishments and bring them together into just one establishment in the town centre. This initial project remained on hold when the Prelate died. A land recovery policy was implemented, partly on the vast Trinitaires site. The first stone was laid in 1573. The construction of the Hôtel-Dieu spanned two centuries, the 16th century for the north and west wings and the 17th for the other two (work of Jacques Peytret). The work of the new establishment (welcome all sick people, abandoned children and orphans) could be carried out principally thanks to generous sponsors, tax revenue from the hospital and aid from the town. The staff consisted of laymen and monks, doctors, administrative and domestic staff and artisans. Two priests assisted the dying. From 1664, the care of the sick was entrusted to the Hospital Sisters of the Order of Saint Augustine. Vincent Van Gogh stayed there briefly in 1888 and 1889 and was treated by Doctor Félix Rey, before being interned in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence. Major changes were made to the building in the early 20th century, when it was made to comply with sanitary standards. The Hôtel-Dieu continued to operate until 1974, replaced by Joseph-Imbert Hospital. In 1986, the last medical services left the site, which was then turned into a cultural centre.
In 1986, work began to strip the hospital and transform it into a vast cultural centre intended to house a media centre, the communal archives, the International College of Literary Translators (CITL), a university outpost, a vast exhibition room and a few shops. Following a competition, Denis Froidevaux and Jean-Louis Tétrel were appointed to carry out the renovation work. The two architects used their archive research and the discoveries of a pre-site to adapt their project to the history and original structure of the building. In addition to this structure and the site's mediaeval past, extremely productive excavations uncovered, among other things, a large Roman esplanade (confirming an unknown fact in the town's ancient urban fabric) and a protohistoric necropolis. During this vast operation, the door on rue Dulau was also restored by Férignac in 1988.

Information provided by OT Arles

  • Contact

    Espace Van Gogh
    Place Du Docteur Félix Rey
    13200 Arles

  • Phone

    • 00 00 00 00 00
  • Tours

    Arles and Van Gogh

Nearby

  1. First class

    Hotel

    Read more
  2. Nickel Torsten

    B&B

    Read more
  3. Vast horizon

    B&B

    Read more
  4. L'Ancien Moulin à Tabac

    Holiday rental

    Read more

Where to stay

Les Hameaux de Camargue
Resort

Les Hameaux de Camargue

Arles

At the gates of the Regional natural park near the city center of Arles, the hamlets of Camargue Camargue"welcome you on the banks of a lake surrounded by greenery. Fully equipped for 2 to 6 people, the apartments and villas will charm you for your stay, business or leisure, for a night, a…

Midi Workshop
B&B

Midi Workshop

Arles

Exceptional location between the Thermae of Constantin and the Musée Réattu, this House Gallery offers 3 beautiful rooms at low prices. 5 minutes walk from the train station and all the monuments, the welcome is friendly and family-run.Breakfast on the terrace in the warm season.Parking nearby

First class
Hotel

First class

Arles

Economic hotel in exit direction Nîmes, in a shopping area in 5 minutes from the centre of Arles, air-conditioned, individual bathroom in each room, TV. Breakfast at will to 5, 90EUR. Public transport nearby.

Ibis budget palais des Congrès
Hotel

Ibis budget palais des Congrès

Arles

Our Ibis Budget hotel has 64 air-conditioned and soundproofed, modern rooms. This is the essence of comfort at low cost.Our hotel is located 3 minutes walk from the Museum of ancient and facing the Palais des Congrès.You can reach the centre of the old city on foot (20 minutes) or even take the…

L'olivier
Holiday rental

L'olivier

Arles

Apartment for 4 to 6 persons in the "Village Camarguais" residence in the heart of the Regional Natural Park of Camargue, situated 4 km from the city centre and 2.5 km from the commercial area Fourchon.

HOSTELLERIE of the Source
Hotel

HOSTELLERIE of the Source

Arles

The Hostellerie of the Source is a 2 star 21 rooms located 2.5 km from the city centre. Large garden with outdoor swimming pool in the quiet, parking and location for bus.Restore evening step and groups. Meeting room 15-20 people.

City
Campsite

City

Arles

The City Camping is a family campsite situated in Camargue Arles.Ideally positioned, not far from the city centre of Arles while keeping the peace and tranquility of a secluded, you will spend an unforgettable stay in our beautiful Provence.Camping City is equipped with mobile homes for hire and…

La Maison Bleue
Holiday rental

La Maison Bleue

Arles

Charming house in the historical and preservation centre of Arles, close to the Bullring and the Church of the Major. Its privileged location allows to enjoy walk from all historic monuments of the city and events (cultural, markets...).Located at the bottom of a small courtyard where reigns an…

Barge Saint Louis
B&B

Barge Saint Louis

Arles

An unusual way to stay? A houseboat, of course!Not far from the city centre, heading south towards the Van Gogh Bridge, the urban landscape gives way to nature and boats floating on the calm waters of the Canal from Arles to Bouc. Between them, the Saint Louis, a former commercial boat of 1930…

Things to do

Carnet de voyage
Souvenirs shopping

Carnet de voyage

Arles

Au cœur du centre historique d'Arles, nous vous accueillons pour vous faire découvrir notre sélection d'articles tout en couleur. Des toiles basques aux couleurs toniques, déclinées en nappes, sets de tables, torchons ... et aussi, des sacs petits et grands. De la terre travaillée dans…

Colors of Arles - The shirts of the gardian
Craftsman

Colors of Arles - The shirts of the gardian

Arles

This small family business has made a specialty of Gardian clothing, these guardians of Camargue manade: how Indian shirt, black velvet jackets, trousers in "Mole skin" adorned on the side with a thin black lace skirts covered... Models, the colors of Camargue and Provence, are entirely…

Hortus
Landscape

Hortus

Arles

Roman-inspired garden. This garden, real plant Racecourse is inspired by a text written at the end of the first or beginning of the second century a.d. by Pliny the younger.Come and discover this public space in the form of Roman circus. You can play (playing kit available at the Museum), stroll,…

Lysiane Laurent
Craftsman

Lysiane Laurent

Arles

In this workshop shop all is made on-site by Lysiane LAURENT and his daughter. Tablecloths, napkins, aprons, small luggage, dresses, skirts are designed and designed with passion in the respect of the Provençal tradition. Listen, you will certainly hear the sewing machine or the sound of…

Sya Bijoux
Craftsman

Sya Bijoux

Arles

Amandine SANDERS graduated in jewellery and has been employed for 10 years. Passionate about creating since childhood, she feels the need to propose its style and its own ideas. She then created his Studio, home, and joined a boutique shared in 2018. Her fancy jewelry highlight of natural stones…

Farfantello
Souvenirs shopping

Farfantello

Arles

Farfantello est une adresse pour les enfants, petits et grands. Un choix magique de décoration vintage pour la chambre et de jouets rétro qui nous replonge dans nos souvenirs d’enfance. Il faut entrer pour découvrir tout plein d’idées cadeaux et de trésors pour les minots (ananas…

Pure Lavender
Souvenirs shopping

Pure Lavender

Arles

The Château du Bois is a signature of excellence in the field of natural cosmetics. It offers a range of cosmetics 'made in France', and shares a universe of dream with the beautiful Lavender fields of the domain, a revelation for the senses, a legacy of work, expertise and passion. Cosmetic…

Conservatoire du santon Provençal
Cultural place

Conservatoire du santon Provençal

Arles

Henri Vezolles, Artisan master santonnier, is surrounded by this popular art enthusiasts who have agreed to lend their rarest santons to you to enjoy. In a House of the 18th century, you can admire the works of the greatest Provençal santonniers, past and present. Through more than 2,000…

The river Rhône
Landscape

The river Rhône

Saintes Maries de la Mer, Port Saint Louis du Rhône, Tarascon, Arles

The Rhone and its delta have not only given their name to the department, but this peaceful and majestic river also forms the backbone of the Bouches-du-Rhone. From Avignon to the Camargue beaches, the river passes through the most authentic Provençal landscapes. Famous for a long time for the…

Where to eat

Le Réfectoire
Table 13

Le Réfectoire

Arles

With classroom chairs and shared tables, the décor is, naturally, reminiscent of childhood canteens. The rest is more state-of-the-art: the reasonably-priced menu is the work of a Michelin-starred chef (Armand Arnal, of La Chassagnette), in a converted industrial building (the former SNCF…

Autruche
Food guide restaurant

Autruche

Arles

'Neo-bistro' restaurant with a beautiful terrace in the town centre. Modern cuisine and fresh produce in this 'house' which is starting to make a name for itself.

Thyme bar
Table 13

Thyme bar

Arles

Les Milhau are masters in the art of satisfying guests with their charming and relaxed welcome, traditional and faultless home-made Provencal cuisine, a pleasant terrace and reasonable prices. Simple and fuss-free quality.

Next to the bistro
Food guide restaurant

Next to the bistro

Arles

This is Jean-Luc Rabanel's second star-rated establishment, serving friendlier-priced and more family-style food. The gourmet dishes are crafted with the expertise of one of France's greatest contemporary cooks. Traditional salt cod and stewed chicken take on a whole new lease of life here. The…

Galoubet
Food guide restaurant

Galoubet

Arles

Bistro cuisine around the fireplace in winter and under the arbour when the weather is warm (foie gras, artichoke hearts, veal liver, catfish, roast pineapple, poached pears, etc.).

Gueule du Loup
Food guide restaurant

Gueule du Loup

Arles

There are no bobbins to pull here and no latches to go up. This little house built in 1780 offers no danger to Little Red Riding Hoods all they have to do is choose between the two dining rooms, one facing the ground floor kitchen and the other with exposed stone walls on the first floor. There's…

Jean-Luc Rabanel workshop
Food guide restaurant

Jean-Luc Rabanel workshop

Arles

Every gourmet knows his name: Jean-Luc Rabanel is one of the stars of French gastronomy and a major personality, who has been tending to his kitchen garden for over 30 years. A master of vegetables, spokesman for organic produce and pioneer of the "locavore" local food trend, this chef transcends…

Garden of Manon
Food guide restaurant

Garden of Manon

Arles

Restaurant open for 24 years, developing a southern cuisine inspired by fresh and season.In summer, the garden will welcome you in we space vegetated.

Chardon
Food guide restaurant

Chardon

Arles

Thistle is a place of life, exchanging and sharing located in the centre of Arles. This is a restaurant that welcomes chefs in residence, who has so for goal and purpose to evolve constantly renewing.The team of the "Paris Popup" is at the origin of this project who wants to shake up the codes of…

Inspirations

The accent

The accent

Art de vivre

The accent: our identity

Villages of Provence

Villages of Provence

Lifestyle

Villages the world over envy us!

The "Navette"

The "Navette"

Terroir

Celebrated at Candlemas, this traditional Provencal biscuit is also a popular sweet treat all year round

The 'OM'

The 'OM'

Lifestyle

The 'OM' is more than just a symbol, it's a way of life!