As we revealed in our last post, we are big believers that visiting museums and exhibitions is vital if you wish to get the full experience of art and antiques. These collections, curated by experts, feature the absolute best of the best and visiting them in person brings so many benefits, which you can read all about here.
Today we are swinging the focus directly onto a couple of artists we are passionate about by taking a look at two wonderful museums in Nancy, France, with spectacular collections of Daum and Gallé antiques.
Nancy Musée des Beaux-Arts (Fine Arts Museum)
Daum and Nancy are names synonymous with one of France’s greatest glassworks, with Daum’s renown originally linked to the Ecole de Nancy movement.
The Daum Frères were incredibly talented glass artists who grew to become one of the major forces in the Art Nouveau movement. They are known for their longevity and creativity, their production always moving with the times, particularly in the art of pâte-de-cristal, a major contributing factor in terms of its worldwide reputation.
Do read all about them in our ‘Know Your Artists’ post here.
The Daum Collection at the Nancy Musée des Beaux-Arts
With more than 600 items on display, the Daum glasswork in the Nancy Fine Arts Museum is held up as a reference collection by the scientific community and the public alike. It is fair to say that it has no equivalent in any French or foreign museum. The collection is of top-notch aesthetic and historic quality and documents the history of glass manufacturing since it began in the 1800s through to items produced in the 1990s.
The Ecole de Nancy Museum
Under the decisive guidance of artists such as Émile Gallé, the turn of the 20th century saw a period of revival for the École de Nancy, with glassware, furniture, stained glass and ceramic arts all contributing to unprecedented growth.
The Musée de l’École de Nancy celebrates this and is located on the former property of Eugène Corbin, the most important patron and collector of École de Nancy artwork. The garden of this property has been preserved, with most of its original landscaping restored in the spirit of the early 20th century. The furniture and other artworks on display inside the Museum also recreate the unique atmosphere of that period.
The museum’s collections are a testimony to the diversity of creative techniques practiced by the artists of this school, with a fine display of furniture, glassware, stained-glass, leather, ceramics and textiles from the period.
An extensive collection of over 400 glass and ceramic works by Emile Gallé are also housed within the museum. These include several of Gallé’s most exemplary pieces of furniture, including Les Parfums d’autrefois “The Scents of the Past”, Le Rhin “the Rhine” table and the Aube et Crépuscule “Dawn and Twilight” bed are equally presented.
As a lover of Gallé’s glass, this museum is fantastic to visit as you are able to appreciate the versatility of this wonderful artist.
Most of the ‘Masson dining room’ also features a lovely set of glassware designed by Émile Gallé that truly exemplifies the outstanding technical skills and naturalist ideas that inspired this artistic movement.
More information can be found to plan your visit on the museum’s website here or the Nancy Tourism website here.
These two glassworks continue to be my absolute favourites in the world of art glass. I do believe the quality of the production and the skill of the artists and craftsmen of these museum-quality items has never been equalled or excelled.