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Home>Exhibitions & Events>Exhibitions>French Drawings from the Mariette Collection

With support from the Musée du Louvre and the Association Mariette pour la Promotion du Dessin Français.

Pierre Jean Mariette (1694–1774) brought together one of the most fascinating collections in the whole of the eighteenth century, with drawings taking pride of place (around ten thousand sheets).

Masterpieces by great artists stood alongside pieces of bravura by minor masters, in line with the encyclopedic commitment of this “genius jack-of-all-trades.”

A collection of this caliber seemed destined to join those of king and nation. This was the wish of both Mariette and the administration—but, as sometimes happens, the heirs decided otherwise. The auctioning-off lasted for no less than two and a half months, during which time nearly one thousand drawings were nonetheless purchased for the king’s cabinet.

Pierre Rosenberg, of the French Academy, President emeritus of the Musée du Louvre, assisted by Laure Barthélemy-Labeeuw, rose to the dizzying challenge of reconstructing this legendary collection by scouring public and private collections the world over to track down drawings that had once belonged to Mariette. On the occasion of the publication of two initial volumes listing nearly four thousand French drawings, the Musée du Louvre is presenting the survey’s methodological basis and its main findings. On display are around one hundred works, some famous and some recently identified, which went from the collector’s to the museum’s portfolios.

Organized by:

Pierre Rosenberg, of the French Academy, President emeritus of the Musée du Louvre, Laure Barthélemy-Labeeuw, of the Association Mariette pour la promotion du dessin français and Bénédicte Gady, Department of Prints and Drawings, Musée du Louvre.

Practical information


Sully wing, 2nd floor, rooms 20-23

Included in the museum ticket: €10
Open every day except Tuesday.
From 9 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. (9:45 p.m. on Wednesdays and Fridays).

Further information:
+ 33 (0)1 40 20 53 17