July 2016 – France « Impressionism and Gourmet Travel » Chapters 1-6: Impressionist Festival Andre Malraux Museum in Le Havre

July 2016 France "Impressionism and the journey of gourmet"
July 2016 France "Impressionism and the journey of gourmet"

The first venue of the Impressionist Festival

The first article of the Impressionist Festival event visit that I introduced last time is the MuMa – Musée d’art moderne André Malraux in Le Havre, where I stayed on the first day.

Here are some of the events that were taking place here.

Eugène Boudin, l’atelier de la lumière

MuMa, Musée d’art moderne André Malraux, Le Havre, du 16 avril au 26 septembre 2016

The museum is located near the harbor on the southwest side of the city area.

Boudin, an extrovert who had a profound influence on the Impressionists

And the star of the show is « Eugène Boudin ».

He was a member of the « paint outside, it’s good! » style, and is said to have had a great influence on later Impressionist painters. It is said that he taught Monet to paint outside. Because they started to paint outside, their paintings became very colorful compared to the paintings of the past. However, they were still too innovative at the time, and their paintings sold very little in the early days.

Many of Boudin’s paintings depict the harbor, coastline, and beaches of his hometown, Le Havre, and I got the impression that the colors were mostly bright and soft light blue. I think this may be the first time I’ve seen them slowly.

The main focus of the exhibition is, of course, Boudin, but there are also some works by Monet and Renoir, who lived with him in Normandy in the 1860s and painted sea and harbor scenes outside.

There were also many paintings on display from Etrurta, not far from Le Havre, which we had just visited that day.

If I had seen this exhibition first, my impression of Etruscan might have been very different…

There were also some impressionist paintings by Sisley other than Monet. I love Sisley.

A collection second only to the Musée d’Orsay

The MuMa has 325 exhibitions of his works. It is the second largest museum after Musee d’Orsay. By the way, he was born in Honfleur and grew up in Honfleur, where he learned painting and became a painter. There is a museum named after him, « Musee Boudin ». However, the MuMa in Le Havre has a larger collection. I went there two days after my visit to Le Havre, because the Impressionist Festival was held there.

Boudin died in Paris in 1898, but two years later his brother donated his work to the MuMa, where it remains to this day, and the first exhibition of his reminiscences was held in 1906, just eight years after his death. Boudin is also said to have influenced artists such as Raoul Dufy and Georges Braque, who grew up and studied painting in Le Havre and were active in the early 20th century.

Although this exhibition included mostly paintings from the MuMa collection, some of them had been borrowed for this festival from other museums, such as the Musée d’Orsay. I think a certain seriousness in this area is a factor that makes this festival more interesting.

Especially, Orsay in Paris is very crowded. Even though it’s vacation season, it’s not as crowded as Paris, or rather it’s very empty, so it’s nice to be able to see the works slowly.