Created in 2015 from the wish to make the Louvre more accessible, the Petite Galerie presents each year, for 10 months, an exhibition on a transversal theme in the history of art. As a true introduction to the museum, this space of artistic and cultural education invites everyone to learn to look at and discover art.
"The Petite Galerie aims to give visitors keys to observe and explain the works of art, to make the visit to the museum a moment of pleasure and discovery", according to Jean-Luc Martinez, president-director of the Louvre museum.
After "Founding Myths" and "The Body in Movement", the theme of this new exhibition, about the Power Plays is once again linking artistic disciplines such as sculpture, painting and photography, to offer to the visitor a rather broad and sometimes unexpected vision of the representation of power through art and the centuries. To surprise, teach and educate the eye are the ambitions of the Petite Galerie du Louvre.
The different figures of the Prince, the art as a tool of propaganda through the figure of Henry IV, the insignia and symbols of the power, or the figures of the Freedom are presented to the visitors in four rooms and 40 works of art. The newest use of digital mediation devices (3D scanning, slide show, cartels and digital slips) punctuate the visitor's journey to make it more alive.
Thus, through the analysis of the painting depicting Henry IV in Hercules slaying the Lernaean Hydra and that of the statuette of the king in Jupiter, the visitor discovers how the founder of the Bourbon dynasty legitimates his accession to the throne by referring to myths from antiquity.
A traveling version of the Petite Galerie also goes to meet the public at their workplaces or schools through an exhibition of reproductions of works. The ambition is to arouse an interest in art, to trigger the desire to cross the threshold of a museum that remains intimidating for many people.
The PSA Foundation, sponsor of La Petite Galerie since its creation, supports initiatives giving access to education and culture to people that are vulnerable, disabled, suffering from economic insecurity, or geographical isolation.
The Petite Galerie, which opens the doors of the museum, offers the public a dedicated site and tours of the museum collections to extend the visit of the exhibition. By going where the art is too rare, in companies or hospitals for example, this device aligns with the mission of social inclusion that the PSA Foundation has assigned itself.
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