This museum was certainly one of the highlights of our visit to Paris. It is a family home turned into a first class museum. Edouard Andre was the son of a wealthy, Protestant banking family and Nelie Jacquemart was a young Catholic painter from a modest family. Their mutual love of art is very evident in their magnificent collection. Not having any children they agreed to leave their collection to the people of France. He had a sure eye for acquisitions and she had a flare for the proper display of the works. You will be wowed by this museum.
Part of your entrance fee includes a headphone tour and this helps to enhance your appreciation of the works and the setting.
The first parlor you enter was set up to impress guests and it still does. It includes 2 Viger Lebrun portraits, 2 Canalettos, 2 Nattiers and 2 Bouchers. The grand salon has 18th century tapestries and paneling. There are walls that go into the floor that allow 3 rooms to become one and accomadate 1000 people at a party.
The tapestry room was constructed to fit the tapestries. It has a beautiful panelled ceiling and lovely furniture in pastel colors. They bought not only art works but whole rooms, ceilings, walls, doors, panelling etc. What ever they found beautiful and could fit into one of their homes.
In 1872 Nelie Jacquemart painted Edouard portrait. They didn't marry until 1881 but one has to wonder if they fell in love during the painting of the portrait. It is on display in the house. Part of the attraction here is the very real story of these two extraordinary people. The other part of the attraction is of course the art.
There are Rembrandts, Van Dykes, Frans Hals, Tiepolo, David, Lawrence, Reynolds, Gainsborough, Bernini, Boticelli, Mantagna, Fragonard, Chardin, and more all set in the most lovely rooms of furniture and decorative arts. Its not too much, its just enough.
This is finast collection in France, second only to the Louvre and it belonged to one couple. Its amazing.
There is a really superior gift shop and a cafe which had a very long line. Most of the people here appear to be French, its about time they shared their secret.