Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris

Euphronios, cratère à figures rouges_Héraclès et Antée, Athènes. DAGER, musée du Louvre © RMN-Grand Palais_musée du Louvre_Stéphane Maréchalle-jpg
Author Yulia Savikovskaya
Category Columnists, Culture, Lifestyle, Town
Date April 12 2024
Reading Time 5 min.

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris

Paris is actively preparing for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, and for the first time in 100 years they will be held in this city in July-August 2024. A major exhibition at the Museum of Decorative Arts Fashion and Sport: From the Podium to another, which showcased different sports fashions for men and women from the 17th and 18th centuries to the present day, has just ended, but two exciting new exhibitions are opening in time for the Olympic Games at the Louvre and Marmottan-Monet Museum. There is also the first European exhibition on Mexico’s Templo Mayor at the Museum of Quai Branly, a retrospective of Impressionists Inventing Impressionism at the the Musée d’Orsay and an exhibition dedicated to metal music at the Museum of Music located next to the Paris Philharmonic Hall in the north of the city. We recommend taking the train and travelling to Paris before the city turns into a huge crowd, where “horses and men” (as Lermontov once out it), or rather tourists and athletes from all over the world will mingle. Our top 7 exhibition choices in Paris will be presented as seven instructions for action. So, one, two, three, go!

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
Modern Paris / Petit Palais.

1. See modern Paris and keep your head on

If you rush to the French capital right now, you have until 14 April 2024 to catch the hugely popular exhibition Modern Paris (1905-1925) at the Petit Palais. The exhibition is the conclusion of a trilogy dedicated to Paris and covers the most tumultuous period in the history of 20th century Paris – the 1910s-1920s. It starts from the origins of Cubism and goes to the Universal Exposition (or International Exhibition of Decorative Arts and Art Industries), which took place in 1925 close to the exhibition site, near the Grand Palais and the Alexander the Third Bridge. The exhibition is a bit eclectic, but includes literally everything Paris was known for in those years – the Futurists and Cubists, Diaghilev’s visit and his Russian Seasons featuring the first performance of Stravinsky’s ballet The Riot of Spring in 1913 (actually, a room is dedicated to the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, where this premiere took place), the music of the Six (six French composers, including Poulenc and others), the fashion and perfume of the 1920s, gender fluidity of Parisian elites, the the black superstar dancer Josephine Baker and the Swedish ballets decorated by Fernand Léger. Highly recommended!

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
Euphronios, cratère à figures rouges_Héraclès et Antée, Athènes. DAGER, musée du Louvre © RMN-Grand Palais_musée du Louvre_Stéphane Maréchalle-jpg

2. Become an Olympian in the Louvre

This spring, the Louvre Museum will tell the story of the first modern Olympic Games and show how the first medals and Olympic cups were made, wnd what iconography and ancient traditions were used by those who decided to restore the Olympic Games in the 19th century. The full title of the exhibition is Olympism: modern invention, ancient heritage, and the Louvre Museum with its unique collection of Greek and Etruscan vases depicting ancient athletes is in perfect position to weave the thread that runs from antiquity to the current summer Olympic Games 2024. The French public figure Pierre de Coubertin (later President of the International Olympic Committee) was the inspiration behind the Games, and later he and a group of Greek and French luminaries were joined by Emile Gilleron, a Swiss artist and draughtsman famous for his reconstructions of ancient frescoes, who became the official artist of the first modern Olympic Games in 1896. His medals, as well as the first Olympic trophy designed by the French linguist and historian Michel Bréal, will be on display at this remarkable exhibition. Indeed, the Olympics began in France and are returning to France again!

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
© Ferdinand Gueldry, Match annuel entre la Société Nautique de la Marne et le Rowing Club, 1883 © Musée intercommunal de Nogent-sur-Marne

3. Play and win! Exhibition at the Musée Marmottan-Monet

Another exhibition timed to coincide with the Olympic Games will be the exhibition “Let’s play! The Artist and Sport” in a small but very interesting museum that houses the world’s largest collection of Claude Monet’s paintings, including his famous Water Lilies, although many of the works are often on loan at other exhibitions. The exhibition, which focuses on the repesentation of sport in art between 1870 and 1930, will run from 4 April to 1 September 2024 and will show us how sporting events and games were depicted by artists such as Monet, Degas, Toulouse-Lautrec, Caillebotte, Richter, as well as sculptors Rodin and Maillol. The exhibition will feature works from private and public collections – it seems like a great chance to see new themes and discover hidden gems of favourite masters.

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
Impression, Sunrise / Claud Monet / Wikipedia

4. Invent Impressionism at the Musée d’Orsay

And staying with our favourite impressionists further, we now move to another museum. From 26 March to 14 July 2024, the Musée d’Orsay, which we all associate with the rich collection of Impressionists, will tell us how this style, which later made us look at the real world in a different way, was created and invented. 150 years ago, on 15 April 1874, an exhibition was opened at which artists who decided not to paint their canvases according to the accepted academic rules were presented. It was there that Claude Monet’s painting Impression. The Rising Sun(1872), and so the term was coined, and this exhibition became known as the first ever Impressionist exhibition. True to history, the Musée d’Orsay will bring together the paintings and the artists – Sisley, Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, Degas, Berthe Morisot – who were represented in it, and try to show us which techniques, which images, which techniques and which vision later led to Impressionism conquering the whole world, including collectors from the United States, from where many works will come.

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
Museum of Anthropology

5. Dive into the universe of ancient Mexico

The very beautiful Museum of Anthropology on the Quai Branly, opened by the initiative of Jacques Chirac in 2006 (the design of the building represents of a river where which visitors explore the cultures of the world and is a project of the architect Jean Nouvel) from 3 April to 8 September 2024 will host the exhibition “Mexico: the gifts and gods of Templo Mayor”. Templo Mayor, or the Great Temple, is a complex of religious buildings in the former Tenochtitlan. It is for the first time that the results of the decades of excavations will be presented in Europe. The exhibition is being held in partnership with the National Institute of Archaeology and History (Mexico) and will show around 200 gifts that the people of the “mexica” civilisation (this is how the museum says it is correct to call the Aztecs) brought to their gods.

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
Cinémathèque de Paris

Meanwhile, at the Cinémathèque de Paris, located in the 14th arrondissement of Paris, from 4 April 2024 to 5 January 2025 it will be possible to get to rediscover the films of the world famous Canadian director James Cameron, It seems like everyone has seen at least some of his blockbusters, ranging “Terminator” (1984) to “Titanic” (1997) and “Avatar” (2009). At the exhibition you will be able to plunge into the creative process of the director. There will be drawings and models from his archives for his realised and unrealised projects, and also costumes of film characters, photos from the sets, video footage from the films and immersive spaces for step into Cameron’s film world. The exhibition is divided into six thematic sections: “Dreaming with Eyes Wide Open”, “Human Machine”, “Exploring the Unknown”, “Titanic: Recreating Time”, “Creatures: Humans and Aliens” and “Wild Worlds”. We think it’s something you shouldn’t miss!

Running to exhibitions like Olympians: spending spring in Paris | London Cult.
Exhibition METAL – Diabolus in musica © Joachim Bertrand

7. Plunge into heavy metal

You can finish your weekend in Paris by learning more about the history of the not-so-familiar rock music genre – metal – at the  Museum of Music in the north of the city. You can combine your visit with an evening at the Philharmonie de Paris. From 5 April to 29 September 2024 at the exhibition Metal: The Devil in Music will tell you about the British roots of this genre. It originated in Birmingham in the 1970s and was called hard rock then – it was the time when the first album of Black Sabbath was released. The birth of the word “metal” happened in the 1980s, it was taken from the song “Born to be wild” by Steppenwolf. The genre has different variations, from soft (glam metal, power metal) to hard (black metal), and the exhibition will present as its first performers and its arrival to France. You will be definitely blown away!

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