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The renowned Fine Arts Museum of Rouen was established by Napoleon I but the present building dates back to the end of the 19th century and was entirely restored in 1994. It is one of the richest and most visited Fine Arts Museums in France after Paris.


The Fine Arts Museum of Rouen

Fine Arts Museum of Rouen © Giogo - licence [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons
Fine Arts Museum of Rouen © Giogo – licence [CC BY-SA 3.0] from Wikimedia Commons

The museum houses an extensive and varied collection of painting, sculpture, drawing and decorative art collections in 63 rooms dedicated to permanent exhibitions. Regular temporary exhibitions are often held.

The pride of the museum is its painting collection as every European schools is represented, from the 15th to the 21st centuries, including artists such as Perugino, Rubens, Nicolas Poussin, Eustache Le Sueur, Fragonard, Géricault, Delacroix, Corot, Sisley, Renoir, Pissaro, Degas, Monet and Modigliani. As for the impressionism collection, outside Paris, it is one of the richest in France.

Fine Arts Museum of Rouen © photothèque OT Rouen
Fine Arts Museum of Rouen © photothèque OT Rouen

The Fine Arts Museum of Rouen have some of Monet’s paintings depicting Rouen: La Cathédrale de Rouen (Monet, 1894), Vue Générale de Rouen (Monet, 1892), and Vue des bords de la Seine à Rouen (William Callow, 1855).

Some unexpected works of art can be found, such as a rare collection of Russian icons from the 16th century.

Fine Arts Museum of Rouen, galerie intérieure © B. Voisin
Fine Arts Museum of Rouen, galerie intérieure © B. Voisin

List of painters whose paintings are on display

15th and 16th centuries:

Saint Barnabé guérissant les malades Veronese
Saint Barnabé guérissant les malades Veronese

Renaissance paintings from Italy: Pietro Perugino, Paolo Veronese, Giampietrino, Jacopo Bassano, Lavinia Fontana, Palma il Giovane and Annibale Carracci.

The Virgin among the Virgins by Gerard David
The Virgin among the Virgins by Gerard David

Renaissance paintings from France, Flanders and Holland: Gérard David, Louis Bréa, François Clouet, Pieter Aertsen, Maarten de Vos, Abraham Bloemaert

17th century

Démocrite by Diego Velázquez
Démocrite by Diego Velázquez

Golden Age of Spain: Velasquez, Jusepe de Ribera et Francisco Herrera the Elder.

Christ at the Column by Caravaggio
Christ at the Column by Caravaggio

Italian paintings from: Caravaggio, Guercino, Bernardo Strozzi, Sisto Badalocchio, Daniele Crespi, Mattia Preti, Carlo Maratta, Giuseppe Recco, Michelangelo Cerquozzi, Luca Giordano.

Venus Presenting Arms to Aeneas by Nicolas Poussin
Venus Presenting Arms to Aeneas by Nicolas Poussin

French painters (particularly painters native from Normandy): Nicolas Poussin, Jean Jouvenet, Philippe de Champaigne, Simon Vouet, Pierre Mignard, Nicolas Régnier, Matthieu Le Nain, Claude Vignon, Jacques Blanchard, Jacques Stella, Sébastien Bourdon, Laurent de La Hyre, Eustache Le Sueur, Charles Le Brun, Noël Coypel, Joseph Parrocel, Charles de La Fosse, Nicolas de Largillière.

Adoration of the shepherds by Rubens
Adoration of the shepherds by Rubens

Dutch and Flemish paintings from: Peter Paul Rubens, Antony Van Dyck, Judith Leyster, Jan Lievens, Jan Van Goyen, Gabriel Metsu, Gerard ter Borch, Jan Steen, Nicolaes Berchem, Cornelis Norbertus Gysbrechts, Willem Kalf, Otto Marseus van Schrieck, Jan Davidsz de Heem, Thomas de Keyser, Leonard Bramer, David Teniers the Young, Matthias Stom.

Henry Arundel and family at the cross by John Michael Wright
Henry Arundel and family at the cross by John Michael Wright

One English painting from John Michael Wright.

18th century

Le mariage de Psyché et de l'Amour by François Boucher
Le mariage de Psyché et de l’Amour by François Boucher

French paintings from: Hyacinthe Rigaud, Alexandre-François Desportes, François Boucher, Jean-François de Troy, Jean-Baptiste Oudry, Carle Van Loo, Charles-Joseph Natoire, Jean-Marc Nattier, Nicolas Lancret, Fragonard, Hubert Robert, Claude Joseph Vernet, Joseph-Marie Vien, François-André Vincent.

Italian paintings from: Francesco Guardi, Pietro Longhi, Giovanni Paolo Pannini, Gaspare Traversi

19th century

La justice de Trajan by Delacroix
La justice de Trajan by Delacroix

First half of the 19th century with paintings from: Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun, Jacques Louis David, Joseph-Désiré Court, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Louis-Léopold Boilly, Eugène Delacroix, Théodore Chassériau et Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Jean-François Millet, Théodore Géricault (a native of Rouen).

Rouen Cathedral by Monet
Rouen Cathedral by Monet

Second half of the 19th century with many impressionist paintings from: Claude Monet, Gustave Caillebotte, Johan Barthold Jongkind, Eugène Boudin, Edgar Degas, Henri Fantin-Latour, Pierre Puvis de Chavannes, Gustave Doré, Gustave Moreau, Alfred Sisley (10 paintings), Armand Guillaumin, Clémentine Ballot, Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Albert Lebourg, Félix Vallotton

20th century

Paul Alexandre devant un vitrage by Amedeo Modigliani
Paul Alexandre devant un vitrage by Amedeo Modigliani

Impressionist paintings from: Marchel Duchamp, Jacques Villon, Raoul Dufy, Jacques-Émile Blanche, Édouard Vuillard, Maximilien Luce, André Derain, Othon Friesz, Amedeo Modigliani, Frantisek Kupka, Maurice Denis, Albert Gleizes, Roger de La Fresnaye, Jean Metzinger, Jean Dubuffet, Vieira da Silva, Alfred Manessier.

Post-impressionist paintings from the School of Rouen: Robert Antoine Pinchon, Marcel Couchaux, Narcisse Guilbert, Maurice Louvrier.

For practical information about Rouen’s Fine Arts Museum, visit the official website.


 

About the author

Pierre is a French/Australian who is passionate about France and its culture. He grew up in France and Germany and has also lived in Australia and England. He has a background teaching French, Economics and Current Affairs, and holds a Master of Translating and Interpreting English-French with the degree of Master of International Relations, and a degree of Economics and Management. Pierre is the author of the Discovery Course on the Secrets of the Eiffel Tower and the Christmas book "Voyage au Pays de Noël".

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