The Musée National Eugène-Delacroix is holding an unprecedented exhibition on the mural paintings that Delacroix completed in 1861 for the Chapelle des Saints-Anges in the church of Saint-Sulpice : Jacob Wrestling with the Angel, Heliodorus Driven from the Temple and St. Michael Defeating the Devil. Thanks to exceptional loans from French and foreign museums, the exhibition—boosted by recent research undertaken on the murals during conservation work by the City of Paris—will bring together works by artists who inspired Delacroix, such as Raphael, Titian, Rubens, Le Lorrain and Solimena, and the principal studies and sketches the artist produced while elaborating his three chapel paintings. There will also be works by 19th- and 20th-century artists including Gustave Moreau, Odilon Redon, William Strang, Jacques Lipschitz, René Iché, Charles Camoin, Jean Bazaine and Marc Chagall, who drew inspiration from Delacroix’s art in their own struggles for modernity.
The scenes Delacroix chose to paint for this monumental decorative project are episodes featuring armed, avenging angels—battles that were also a metaphor for the artist’s personal struggle for painting. Delacroix’s Chapelle des Saints-Anges was a total work of art ahead of its time, an illustration of his struggle for modernity and an enduring artistic ideal.
When Eugène Delacroix was commissioned for the chapel paintings in 1849, he was busy with other projects—the ceiling of the Louvre’s Galerie d’Apollon, the decoration of the Salon de la Paix in the Hôtel de Ville (destroyed in 1871), and his solo exhibition at the Universal Exhibition of 1855—but his preparatory work for these projects fueled his ideas for the huge chapel project, to which he devoted himself fully from 1856 onward. In order to be as near as possible to the church of Saint-Sulpice, he moved to Rue de Fürstenberg, to an apartment with a garden and studio that would later become a museum devoted to the artist.
This exceptional exhibition, encompassing Delacroix’s studio and the church of Saint-Sulpice, is an invitation to follow in the artist’s tracks. Leading visitors from the conception phase to the finished works, it will provide keys to a new understanding of Delacroix.
“To tell the truth, painting harasses and torments me in a thousand ways, like the most demanding mistress; for four months, I have scurried away at first light, rushing to continue this enchanting work, as if at the feet of the most beloved mistress; things that
eemed, at a distance, to be the easiest to overcome in fact present appalling, interminable difficulties. How is it, then, that instead of casting me down, this eternal combat uplifts me, not discouraging but consoling me and occupying my time even when I have left
it ?” (Eugène Delacroix, Journal, January 1, 1861)
Exhibition curators: Dominique de Font-Réaulx, Director of the Musée National Eugène- Delacroix, and Marie Monfort, DRAC Île-de-France.
In partnership with the City of Paris.
AROUND THE EXHIBITION (in French only)
PRESENTATION at the Louvre Auditorium
By Dominique de Font-Réaulx , Director of the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix, and Marie Monfort, DRAC Île-de-France.
A p r i l 13, 2018 at 12:30 p.m.
LECTURES at the Musée Delacroix
The conservation of Delacroix’s mural paintings in the church of Saint-Sulpice.
By Marie Montfort, DRAC Île-de-France. May 14, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.
The Conservation of the Pietà in the Paris church of Saint-Denys du Saint-Sacrement
By Jessica Degain, City of Paris. May 28, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.
The Conservation of Christ in the Garden of Olives.
By Emmanuelle Federspiel, City of Paris. June 4, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.
“Sur les pas de Delacroix à Paris” (“In Delacroix’s footsteps in Paris”)
By Dominique de Font-Réaulx, Director of the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix.
June 11, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.
Let Delacroix be your guide.
April 8, June 24 and July 8, 2018 at 11 a.m.
Delacroix, le dernier combat (“Delacroix, the Final Battle”)
by Laurence Thiriat. 2016, 52 min.
Louvre Auditorium, Apr i l 18, 2018 at 12:30 p.m.
Under the direction of Dominique de Font-Réaulx and Marie Monfort.
Texts by Emmanuelle Federspiel, Stéphane Guégan, Thierry Laugée,
Alina Moskalik-Detalle, Paul Perrin and Valérie Sueur.
Co-published by Musée du Louvre éditions / Éditions du Passage.
Publication date: March 25.
Create a collective fresco! A family workshop for ages 10 and over.
Free (subject to prior booking).
May 26 and 27, 2018
With guides from the national museum network (RMN).
Every Saturday at 2:30 p.m. for the duration of the exhibition “Let
Delacroix be your Guide.”
April 8, June 24 and July 8, 2018 at 11 a.m.
STORY-TELLING FOR FAMILIES
Raconte-moi Delacroix (“Tell me about Delacroix”)
April 15, June 24 and July 8, 2018 at 3 p.m.
An invitation to young artists, on the first Thursday of every month.
May 3, June 7, July 5, 2018 until 9 p.m.