Gustave Moreau Museum: little-known and yet extraordinary

Gustave Moreau Museum: little-known and yet extraordinary

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In the 9th arrondissement of Paris, the National Gustave Moreau Museum has sat at 14 rue de la Rochefoucauld since 1903. This museographic space is a rare jewel in the world of art history, as it retraces the artist’s entire body of work, as well as his creative process. In his lifetime, Gustave Moreau began thinking very early on about the future of his artwork in his own home. Born in 1826 and died in 1898, he was inspired by and passionate about biblical and mythological figures. He is considered a Symbolist painter, imbued with mysticism. The four storeys of the museum present 50 years of work and research, with 4,103 drawings, 1,200 paintings, 250 watercolours, 15 wax sculptures and more. Driven by dreams, enthusiasm and elevation, Gustave Moreau used his art to glorify and uplift. André Breton, who discovered this gem at the age of 16, was transcended by that vision of beauty and love. He considered Gustave Moreau to be one of the forefathers of surrealism.

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Gustave Moreau, Les Licornes, huile sur toile, Paris, musée Gustave Moreau, Cat. 213 © RMN-GP / René-Gabriel Ojéda