The Reattu Museum in Arles, installed on the banks of the Rhône in the former Grand Priory of the Order of Malta, presents old works (17th-19th centuries), drawings and paintings by
Picasso and contemporary art.
At the junction of the Rhône and the cardo (the main north/south road of the Roman city), the spot owes its artistic vocation to Jacques Réattu, a painter from Arles, Grand
Prix de Rome in 1790, who bought the building to live and work in. His dream was to house artists in residence here, to give them the intensity of his landscape, 60 years
before Vincent Van Gogh's idea for the "Atelier du Midi". From this never realized dream the museum has inherited the buildings and all the painter's works.
The Musee Reattu owes the continuation of its history to encounters with artists.
In 1965, they created the photography collection, the first in a French museum. In 1971, Picasso made the exceptional donation of a suite of 57 drawings. And in 1980, with
Toni Grand, a commission policy was initiated, inviting sculptors and photographers to create works in tune with the city's heritage.
Today, architecture, the main thread in the museum's policy, constitutes a key in the reading of modern and contemporary art. It favors a cross-disciplinary approach to the
collections and the bridges between art and daily life ; it gives the musee Reattu this function of "laboratory" in the heart of which the artists occupy an essential place.
Christian Lacroix, haute couture design, the Réattu Museum in 2015
Jacques Réattu (1760-1833), Reason tearing away the Blindfold of Error and Superstition of Idolatrous People, tempera on canvas, 1795, 588 x 225 cm, coll. Réattu Museum, Arles
A gargoyle in the main courtyard of the Réattu Museum
Réattu Museum, façade on the Rhône side
Musée Réattu - 10, rue du Grand Prieuré - 13200 Arles
+33 (0)4 90 49 38 34http://www.museereattu.arles.fr