Une fleur bleue


Delacroix was arguably the greatest painter of the Romantic era. The musée Delacroix is located where the artist had his studio in a quiet courtyard on rue de Furstenberg near all the chic cafés on the Boulevard Saint-Germain des Prés . Right now, there’s an exhibit of floral paintings by Delacroix and others, entitled Des Fleurs en Hiver (Flowers in Winter).

musee delacroix2

The Romantic era was all about a reverence for nature in response to the ugliness of the industrial age. After the huge reception that his monumental painting La Liberté Guidant le Peuple received, Delacroix showed five floral paintings at the Salon of 1849. He enjoyed painting in the garden of his friend George Sand, and acquiring his own garden became important to him. In fact, Delacroix’s garden is open to museum goers and it’s a great place to hang out with a book.

musee delacroix3To celebrate the renovation of the garden, this exhibit features the best of Delacroix’s floral paintings and watercolors assembled from museum collections in France and around the world. In addition, as is all the rage these days, there are works by contemporary artists Jean-Michel Othoniel and Johan Creten, both of whom are inspired by flowers. You may recognize Othoniel’s work from the fantastical colored-glass entrance to the metro at the Palais Royal stop. The exhibit will continue until March 18, 2013. Your admission to the Louvre is also your same-day admission to the musée Delacroix, as they administer the tiny museum.

Today’s expression, une fleur bleue (oon flur bluh), literally means “a blue flower” and figuratively means a softie. I don’t know if Delacroix was a softie just because he liked flowers, but it sure is easy to imagine him puttering around his little garden gathering a bouquet of blooms to paint.

51Gxl6osT3L__SL75_Eugène Delacroix, 1798-1863: The Prince of Romanticism

About Patricia Gilbert

Patricia Gilbert is a French teacher. She's Canadian, lives in the United States, but dreams of living in France. Follow her on Instagram @Onequalitythefinest and on Twitter @1qualthefinest.
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1 Response to Une fleur bleue

  1. Pingback: Une croqueuse d’hommes | One quality, the finest.

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