About the exhibition

About the exhibition

An exhibition in the heart of an historical city


The exhibition is in perfect harmony with efforts to introduce a wide-ranging cultural strategy and also as a means to showcase an exceptional local heritage. In the city of Troyes, history is everywhere.

Troyes: one of Europe’s largest collections of restored houses
A city of art and culture, Troyes is the historical capital of Champagne. Classified as a protected area and rich with its remarkable architectural heritage, the town centre is the site of Europe’s largest collection of timber-framed houses. These groups of 16th century homes have rediscovered their lustre and colours of old – green, ochre, bright red… Private timber-framed mansions, or decorated in the Champagne fashion of ‘cladding’ alternating brick and plaster, a labyrinth of alleys, prestigious museums (Museum of Modern Art, sculptors’ tools and creative art centre, etc…). There is so much to see and do in Troyes!

City light
This unusual nocturnal strolling, fun and history to discover or re-live this exceptional event as the most beautiful buildings of Troyes, including the Saint Jean-du-marché church which hosts the exhibition, are set aglow.
From 24 July to 30 August 2009, every Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights at 22h.

The medieval gardens
From May to mid-October, Troyes opens its medieval gardens to the public. Following the creation of the ‘garden of innocents’ in 2008 within the grounds of its oldest church (Saint Madeleine – 12th century), Troyes is soon to open a new garden in the courtyard of the beautiful Hôtel-Dieu-le-Comte.

Aube, cradle of the Knights Templar
FLocated in the heart of the Forest of the Orient Regional Natural Park, on the outskirts of Troyes, the very names Temple Forest, Lake Temple, Forest of the Orient… evoke the Knights Templar, who, back in the 12th century, would ensure safe passage to pilgrims on their way to the Holy Land during the Crusades. A museum dedicated to Hugues de Payns, founder of the Order of the Templar, stands in his birthplace of Payns, near Troyes. It is the perfect opportunity to re-live the turbulent and passionate history of these soldier monks in its original setting.
Special visit on the theme of the Templars with the Office of Tourism of Troyes.

> Troyes Tourist Office: www.tourisme-troyes.com

The artist and sculptor Pierre-Auguste Renoir at Essoyes


Pierre-Auguste Renoir, one of the greatest masters of impressionism, spent some of the best years of his life in his house in Essoyes, birthplace of his wife Aline Charigot – in the very heart of the vineyards of Champagne. Today, the memory of the artist and his friends lives on in his artist’s studio through a collection of personal belongings. Renoir and his wife were laid to rest alongside their children, Pierre the actor, Jean the film director and Claude the ceramist. In much the same way as the studio, the cemetery where they are buried has become a compulsory stop on the pilgrimage to Renoir.

Since 2007, the town of Essoyes has become involved in a large-scale cultural and tourist project entitled "Meet the Renoirs". The whole village will be transformed into an "artist’s village of Champagne". The Renoir name will be enough to attract visitors eager to find out more about the artist and his family, but also characteristics of the Essoyes period. The visit begins at the welcome area, the Espace Renoir, with an absorbing programme on the Renoir family. Visitors may then wander through the painter’s beloved village. As they pass in front of Gabrielle’s house, or cross the charming River Ource which runs through Essoyes, visitors will find their way to the authentically restored artist’s studio, as well its impressive surrounding gardens. The journey into the world of Renoir ends with a choice of four sign-posted trails. Here, one can admire the scenery Renoir loved to replicate on canvas.
Reopening of the workshop: 1st May 2009. Opening of the workshop restored garden and space Renoir: 2010.

Centre for 19th century sculpture at Nogent/Seine, based on works by Camille Claudel
After the Remarkable 16th... we plunge straight into 19th century sculpture at Nogent-sur-Seine, with works by Camille Claudel, Alfred Boucher and Paul Dubois.
Did you know? It is here, at the boundaries of Champagne and Brie, that Camille Claudel (1864-1943) ‘started her new life as an artist” when she met Alfred Boucher (1850-1934). A recognised academic sculptor, Alfred Boucher discovered young Camille’s talents while she was living in Nogent with her family, between 1876 and 1879. He gave her her very first lessons until the summer of 1882 in Paris, when she joined Auguste Rodin’s studio.

Following the successful Claudel exhibition in 2003 at Nogent-sur-Seine, the town decided to buy 80 of her works in preparation for a vast museology site. In the meantime, the Dubois-Boucher museum of sculpture is already a point of reference, with over 400 works of art dating from the late 19th century period. It already houses 3 works by Camille Claudel, among which Persée et la Gorgone, a magnificent marble sculpture classified "of major heritage interest".

> Departmental Tourist Committee: www.aube-champagne.com

Champagne-Ardenne, a whole region to discover!


The cultural section of the 4th State/Region Plan contract makes provision for the enhancement of architectural heritage according to specific themes: stained glass windows, statues, fortified architecture. This has resulted, notably, in a certain number of projects on the subject of stained glass windows: restoration and creative programmes, publications, exhibitions...

The Aube department alone houses no less than 9 000 m2 of windows, of which 1042 bays classified from the 16th century (ranked first in France for its collection of stained glass windows from this period). A rich and attractive tourist region, Champagne-Ardenne continues to regenerate itself, for example, with the opening of the memorial to General De Gaulle at the end of 2008.

An exceptional museology site for one of the grandest figures of History! In Champagne-Ardenne, history is omnipresent; bearing witness through the diversity of its heritage which expresses not only man’s sufferings, but also the splendours of life: : the Cistercian Abbey of Clairvaux, the history of the Knights Templar, vestiges of the First World War 1914-18.

But Champagne-Ardenne is also famous for its very own nectar, a sparkling example of French know-how. An exceptional wine, champagne is one of the most significant symbols of the region’s heritage; tourists the world over come here to visit its wine cellars and follow the magnificent Champagne tour itinerary.

> Regional Tourist Committee: www.tourisme-champagne-ardenne.com

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Exhibition of national interest 2009Exhibition of national interest 2009