Othoniel, Ingres, Delacroix: when three academics meet at the MIB in Montauban

Othoniel, Ingres, Delacroix: when three academics meet at the MIB in Montauban
Othoniel, Ingres, Delacroix: when three academics meet at the MIB in Montauban

the essential
This Thursday, July 11, 2024, two major exhibitions will take place at the Ingres-Bourdelle Museum (MIB) in Montauban. Between the monumental work of the sculptor Jean-Michel Othoniel and the “match” between the painters Delacroix and Ingres, the visitor will be in for a treat.

This Monday, the curator of the Ingres-Bourdelle Museum (MIB), Florence Viguier, invited elected officials and journalists to present a preview of the two exhibitions open to the public from this Thursday, July 11.

Head to the Salle du Prince Noir, which has become a haunt for contemporary artists. Until January 5, 2025, the MIB has given carte blanche to sculptor Jean-Michel Othoniel. The former tenant of the Villa Medici, who has been making a name for himself for decades, saw things on a grand scale. And in black. Even if, ultimately, his monumental installation of 4,000 glass bricks blown in India is a bearer of hope.

“There is a certain telluric violence in this place loaded with history with this bloodthirsty prince who damaged the region for decades. Usually, I work more on enchantment and wonder but here, I took into account the power and gravity. I was invited to exhibit here at the beginning of the war in Ukraine with this feeling that History repeats itself”, explains the artist who titled his work “On the Ruins of the Black Prince”.

“These shapes emerging from the black ground are like the yardangs found in the desert. They are a bit anthropomorphic, like ectoplasm. Because the idea is to escape the darkness. In the evening, it is very beautiful with the light because these bright shapes blend with the bricks. And the briquette in Montauban was an obvious choice,” smiles Jean-Michel Othoniel who, with his team, deployed XXL logistics for this tailor-made work for Montauban, even if these famous glass briquettes had already been observed by 350,000 visitors at the Petit Palais in Paris in 2021.

“We enter into the intimacy of Delacroix”

Claire Bessède and Florence Viguier present 173 objects from the sacred monsters that are Ingres and Delacroix.
DDM – GERALDINE JAMMET

Make way for the two other long-awaited academics. With “Ingres and Delacroix, Artists’ Objects”, the MIB is signing a wonderful collaboration with the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix, which is part of the Louvre. “I dreamed of a major exhibition and you chose this intimate side. You are on first-name terms with History”, says Brigitte Barèges, who was still mayor until the installation of Marie-Claude Berly, who was also present this Monday. “Through objects, we enter into Delacroix’s private life, we understand his tastes better: it tells us a lot of things”, underlines Claire Bessède, director of the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix.

We thus discover with delight this little bronze snake, placed like a paperweight on the desk of the fervent representative of romanticism. Thanks to the ten-year inventory and in-depth research, we know that it was a gift from Georges Sand. “Delacroix wrote to her that he was crazy about his snake. And in his legacy, he mentioned that when he died, he wanted it to come back to him. It is very touching to enter into the secrets of artists’ studios in this way,” observes Claire Bessède.

Florence Viguier delivered a multitude of fascinating anecdotes to the journalists and elected officials present.
DDM – GERALDINE JAMMET

Between busts, newspapers, photographs, furniture and paintings, the MIB exhibits no fewer than 173 objects belonging to these two eternal rivals. Their social class, their way of understanding the nude, the line, music, their sources of inspiration – Antiquity for Ingres, the Orient for Delacroix – but also, their relationship with color: their points of divergence and their similarities are dissected with poetry. It is almost carnal. Must see until November 10.

Contact: museeingresbourdelle.com and 05 63 22 12 91.

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