A June 2002 trip
to Collioure by diminor1929
Quote: It is easy to see why this tiny Mediterranean town became a favorite of a group of artists,known as the Fauvists,who made it their summer home in the late 19th century.
A 12th century Moorish belltower dominates the site, and Collioure is considered to be a true town of the "Cote Vermeille" due to the vermillion color of the water.
You can follow the "Chemin de Fauvism" a self-guided path that takes you around the town, with reproductions of famous paintings by Matisse and Derain, at the site where they were painted.
Another favorite place is the "Moure", which is the old quarter of town. It contains steep but pretty streets, pastel-tinted homes, small galleries and shops and cafes.
Collioure's Musee de Art Moderne is located in the Villa Palms on the edge of town on the way to Port Vendres. An ancient medieval castle in the center of town is used for local art exhibits and concerts. You are sure to fall in love with the history, the beauty and the charnm of this town and like me, will want to return.
Some of the best gelato stands in France will also be found here with more flavors than you can imagine. I tried to work my way through them but only got to sample 6 or 7. They were all delectable.
Strategically located close to the middle of town, it is only a few minutes walk to the beach and cafés.
The restaurant serves the specialties of the area -- anchovies, mussels, grilled sea bass, and incredible olives.
The real attractions of this historic establishment are the original works of art that grace its walls, gifts in lieu of payment from some of the most famous artists of the time. Matisse, Picasso, Maillol, and a host of others spent time in Collioure and if this hotel was good enough for them, I figured it should be good enough for me! It was . . .
Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 6, 2002
Hotel le Templiers
Quai de l'Amiraute
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 15, 2002
Chemin de Fauvism
Self-guided Walking Tour
At any rate, Collioure became kind of a "mecca" for these artists, attracting the likes of Derain, Dali, and Picasso, as well as Maillol (a sculptor), Marquet, Manguin, Vlaminck, Dufy, and others. Fauvism appears to have been a relatively brief movement in art history but had a supreme influence on some of the later Expressionists.
Examples of quaint and colorful fishing boats similar to those Matisse painted are still in the harbor, mainly for tourists and other artists who still flock here. There are lots of touristy artists who have set up canvases along the beach, but the town has some serious art galleries as well.