museum, re-open
The Franco-American Museum reopens

M comme miniature Des miniatures à côté des miroirs, des minarets, les mêmes que dans la ville mais moindres1, les merveilles du monde dans une maison de maître2. Images au mur, ou mirages sur la mer ; masques, têtes de pierre ou cires anatomiques : des machines à songes. En un moment, l’œil ému mêle les mondes. Et rien ne manque à ces paysages minuscules3, pas même le myrte au parfum de musc.

1. À Palerme, on admirera la belle église San Cataldo. 2. Tel le Palazzo Serra di Cassano de Naples. 3. Certains lieux transportent les visiteurs dans des mondes en réduction, décors de tapisserie, paysages imaginaires : à Naples, l’hôpital des Incurables et son musée d’histoire de la médecine ; à Palerme, la Palazzina Cinese, dans le Parco della Favorita.

M as in miniature Miniatures next to mirrors, minarets, the same ones as in the city but smaller,1 the marvels of the macrocosm in a manor house.2 Images on the wall, or maritime mirages; masks, stone heads or wax anatomical models: dream machines. In a moment, the eye is moved, as it mixes and matches worlds. And nothing is missing in these mini-landscapes, not even the myrtle with its musky scent.3

1. The lovely church of San Cataldo can be admired in Palermo. 2. Like the Palazzo Serra di Cassano in Naples. 3. Certain places whisk visitors away into miniature worlds, tapestry motifs, imaginary landscapes: in Naples, the Ospedale degli Incurabili (Hospital for the Incurables) and its Museo delle Arti Sanitarie, a museum of the history of medicine; in Palermo, the Palazzina Cinese, in the Parco della Favorita.

After being closed for a ten-year period, the Franco-American Museum in the Château de Blérancourt, near Noyon, between Lille and Paris, is reopening to visitors. The château and museum have undergone major renovation and extension work, and the collection display has been enhanced, thanks to the support of French and American sponsors. In 1917, on the initiative of Anne Morgan (daughter of the American banker J. P. Morgan), the American Committee for Devastated Francea voluntary civilian relief organizationestablished their headquarters in the Château de Blérancourt. It became a museum in 1924. The collections of artworks and objects in this national museum illustrate the French support for the American Revolution and the work of American volunteers for the French, during World War I. The display offers, among other things, an immersion in the 19th and 20th centuries at a time when French and American artists were inspiring and enriching each other.

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