Now, let us go back to review some Paris’ best museums. This time, it is Musée Picasso. As the name suggests, the museum was built in order to honor the great Spanish artist Pablo Picasso. It has been known to many that Picasso had spent a great period of time in Paris and produced some of his arts there.
The museum is located in Hotel Salé in rue de Thorigny and in fact the hotel’s art gallery. It is recorded as one of several museums dedicated for Picasso. Other Picasso museums can be found in Germany and Spain. There is also one more Picasso museum in France called Chateau Grimaldi which is located in Antibes.
Musée Picasso: The History of the Building
The building that houses Musée Picasso now was built between 1656 and 1659 by Jean Bourges, an architect who was also known as Boullier de Bourges. The sculptures for the building were done by Gaspard, Balthazard Marsy, and Martin Desjardine. It was originally built for Pierre Aubert, a newly rich tax farmer at that time.
Until now, the building has changed owner for several times due to sales and inheritance. It was recorded that it had been used for the Embassy of the Republic of Venice in 1671 and François de Neufville, duc de Villeroi before taken over by the State during French Revolution. In 1815, the building was turned into a school and had housed the municipal École des Métiers d’Art for some time. The City of Paris finally got the ownership of the building in 1964. It was then listed as one of historical monuments in 1968.
The journey of Hotel Salé to house Musée Picasso was not an easy one. It went through some national debate and contentious civic. A competition was then held to choose a designer to design the museum and Roland Simounet was chosen in 1976.
The Musée Picasso Paris Collection and Presentation
Musée Picasso is house to over 3000 works of Pablo Picasso. The works consist of drawings, paintings, sculptures, and ceramics. The museum also displays Picasso’s personal collection of other artists works such as Degas, Seurat, Cezanne, Rousseau, Matisse, and de Chirico.
Musée Picasso gives its best to present Picasso’s work to visitors. Its arrangement of the collection is based on chronological sequence mostly with some rooms dedicated for thematic presentations. Moreover, additional contextual information is also added. There are many newspaper clippings, photographs, and manuscripts presented together with the artworks to provide more information. Some cartoonist works which mock Picasso’s work are also displayed to give different perspective.
Second floor of the museum is available for temporary exhibitions. There is also a library and archives department set on the third floor for those who wish to get information for their research along with the curator’s office.
The Musée Picasso Paris Major Renovation
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to visit this museum if you plan to have your trip soon. The museum is still closed for a major renovation since 2009. The renovation is predicted to finish in the spring of 2013. Meanwhile, the museum’s art collection is going in a temporary tour exhibition all the way from Madrid, Abu Dhabi, Tokyo, Helsinki, Moscow, Seattle, Richmond, San Francisco to Toronto.
Visiting Musée Picasso
Musée Picasso’s address is in 5 rue de Thorigny 3e. To go there, you can take Metro and stop at St Paul or Chemin Vert station. The museum is open during Wednesday to Monday from 9.30 am to 6 pm.
The ticket price is €8.50 for adults over 18 years old. The museum is applying free entrance every first Sunday of the month, so do not miss the chance.