Entering the Fabre Museum, a step or two away from Place de la Comédie, means plunging into a wonderful world that is both far away and close at hand. Because this superb museum, opened in the early 19th century, featuring the collections of François-Xavier Fabre - a neo-classical painter who was taught by David - contains major works from the history of art and the best productions from the past 300 years by artists who had special links with Montpellier and the region.
Vien, Raoux, Bourdon, Fabre, Cabanel, Bazille, as well as Claude Viallat and Vincent Bioulès, are displayed side by side with Bruegel, Rubens, Veronese, Poussin, Ingres, Corot, Monet, Utrillo, Van Dongen and de Staël. And not forgetting a handful of portraits by David and Delacroix.
Through the museum's three levels, visitors advance through time, from Flemish and Dutch painting and the Italian Renaissance to the centuries of classicism and flamboyance. We pass from the Columns Gallery, where the large-scale paintings from the 18th century fill the ochre walls of an impressive space, to more intimate rooms, featuring NeoClassicism and Romanticism, Classicism and modern art. We are struck by the wild beauty of “Aspasie” by Eugène Delacroix, fascinated by the power of expression of “Bord de mer à Palavas” by Gustave Courbet, moved by the freshness of the “Jeune fille assise devant une fenêtre” by Berthe Morisot.
An intimate dialogue with superb paintings that were admired here by Gauguin and Van Gogh, and which is now completed with a contemporary section on the 1st floor, and on the top floor of the museum with its two exposed concrete rooms that were specially designed for works by Pierre Soulages, himself a keen visitor to the Fabre Museum when he was learning his art.The 9000 m2 in the museum mean that over 900 works are on permanent display.
Hôtel de Cabrières Sabatier d'Espeyran
The Decorative Arts department in the Hôtel de Cabrières Sabatier d’Espeyran boasts a rich collection from the 18th and 19th centuries. The collection at the Fabre Museum is among the most important fine arts collections in France and in Europe.
Musée Fabre : From Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm
Hôtel de Cabrières-Sabatier d'Espeyran : From tuesday to Sunday from 2 to 6 pm
Closed on January 1st, May 1st, November 1th, November 11th and December 25th.