Nicolas de Staël Exhibition Nicolas de Staël Exhibition

Nicolas de Staël Exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris from September 15, 2023, to January 21, 2024


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What to expect

Nicolas de Staël: A Captivating Retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris

From September 15, 2023, to January 21, 2024

The Museum of Modern Art in Paris is opening its doors to host an exceptional retrospective dedicated to the fascinating work of Nicolas de Staël (1914-1955). This exhibition marks a significant return, twenty years after the retrospective at the Centre Pompidou in 2003, and offers a fresh perspective on this iconic artist of the French art scene in the post-war era. Building upon more recent thematic exhibitions in Antibes in 2014, Le Havre in 2014, and Aix-en-Provence in 2018, the exhibition provides a unique opportunity to explore lesser-known facets of Nicolas de Staël's career.

The exhibition brings together an impressive selection of nearly 200 pieces, including paintings, drawings, engravings, and sketchbooks, from both public and private collections in Europe and the United States. Among these artistic treasures, the exhibition unveils around fifty works never before displayed in a French museum, offering visitors an unprecedented experience.

Organized chronologically, this retrospective reveals the artist's constant evolution from his early foray into the art world marked by dark and textured paintings in the 1940s to his most recent creations before his tragic passing in 1955. Despite a career primarily concentrated in a dozen years, Nicolas de Staël continued to innovate and explore new artistic directions. He remained indifferent to the artistic trends of his time, deliberately blurring the boundaries between abstraction and figuration. His work is an intense and uncompromising artistic quest, marked by unparalleled creative urgency. "Life is so sad without paintings that I rush as much as I can," he wrote. This retrospective allows visitors to trace this exceptional artistic journey, from his youth travels to his final months in Antibes, facing the sea.

The tumultuous life of Nicolas de Staël inevitably influenced the perception of his work. From his exile after the Russian Revolution to his tragic suicide at the age of 41, his biography has fed the myth surrounding his art. However, this retrospective primarily focuses on the artist's graphic and pictorial research, shedding light on a painter at work, whether facing nature, landscapes, or in the intimacy of his studio.

Nicolas de Staël was an artist in perpetual motion, an indefatigable traveler deeply captivated by the spectacles of the world and the different lights that inhabited them. Whether he painted the sea, a football match, or a simple fruit on a table, he tirelessly explored new techniques, using various tools and formats, ranging from small canvases to monumental compositions. His working method, characterized by the successive layering and alteration of his works, reveals the importance of drawing in his creative process, as evidenced by the rich selection of paper works displayed in this retrospective.

A notable element of this exhibition is the constant presence of an excerpt from the documentary "Nicolas de Staël, la peinture à vif," directed by François Lévy-Kuentz, in coproduction with ARTE France. This production is aired in its entirety on ARTE on September 24, 2023, offering art enthusiasts an opportunity to dive even deeper into the artist's universe.

For those eager to deepen their understanding of Nicolas de Staël's work, the exhibition catalog is a valuable companion. It contains illuminating texts on the artist's relationship with past masters and his contemporary Georges Braque, as well as his connection to landscape and still life. The catalog also offers an exclusive interview with Anne de Staël, the artist's eldest daughter, and the unpublished text from Pierre Lecuire's "Journal des années Staël," a writer, publisher, and close friend of Nicolas de Staël.

After its stint at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris, this exceptional retrospective will be presented at the Hermitage Foundation in Lausanne from February 9 to June 9, 2024.

Curators: Charlotte Barat-Mabille and Pierre Wat

Exhibition organized by the Museum of Modern Art in Paris / Paris Musées in collaboration with the Hermitage Foundation, Lausanne.

Nicolas de Staël Exhibition: Practical Information:

  • Address: 11 Avenue du Président Wilson, 75116 Paris
  • Phone: Tel. +33 1 53 67 40 00
  • Opening Hours:
    • Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (ticket sales close at 5:15 p.m.).
    • Late opening on Thursday evenings until 9:30 p.m. (ticket sales close at 8:45 p.m.) for temporary exhibitions only.
    • Extended Saturday opening until 8 p.m. (ticket sales close at 7:15 p.m.) for the Nicolas de Staël exhibition only.

The Nicolas de Staël Exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris promises to be an unforgettable artistic experience, offering visitors a deep dive into the complex and evolving universe of this visionary artist.


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Customer Reviews

5/53 reviews

Pascal D.
December 20th 2023
Magnifique exposition, je n'ai jamais vu d'exposition aussi magique
Jacqueline -camille D.
December 3rd 2023
Merci de m’avoir donné l’entrée à la même heure qu’une amie comme je vous l’avais demandé
Emmanuel C.
October 21st 2023

Common questions

When does the Nicolas de Staël exhibition take place at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris?

The exhibition runs from September 15, 2023, to January 21, 2024.

Where is the Museum of Modern Art in Paris located?

The museum is situated at 11 Avenue du Président Wilson, 75116 Paris.

What are the exhibition's opening hours?

The exhibition is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Additionally, we offer late-night access on Thursdays until 9:30 PM (ticket office closes at 8:45 PM) for temporary exhibitions only.

How much does admission to the exhibition cost?

Full-price admission is €15, reduced admission is €13, and entry is free for those under 18.

Can we purchase tickets online?

Yes, you can buy tickets online through our website or at the museum's ticket office.

Is it necessary to reserve tickets in advance?

It's not mandatory to book in advance, but it is recommended to avoid long queues, especially on busy days.

Can visitors take photos during the exhibition?

Generally, photography is allowed, but please check the specific rules for the exhibition upon your arrival.

Can the exhibition be visited with children?

Yes, the exhibition is child-friendly, and educational activities are also available.

Are there special facilities for visitors with reduced mobility?

Yes, our museum is accessible to people with reduced mobility, and we provide wheelchairs for visitors who need them.

Is there a cloakroom where I can store my personal belongings?

Yes, we have a cloakroom where you can securely store your personal items.

Can we purchase exhibition-related souvenirs?

Yes, the Museum of Modern Art in Paris gift shop offers a selection of souvenirs, including catalogs, artwork reproductions, and other items related to the exhibition.

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