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18th-Century Courtship Parties Explored

From 14 March 2014 to 21 July 2014

A carefree time for love

The Musée Jacquemart-André celebrates the fête galante from March 14 to July 21, 2014. 'Fête galante' is a French term meaning 'courtship party' but it specifically refers to a style of painting made popular by the French Academy in the 18th century. Such paintings depict a carefree time when aristocrats lounged about in charming wooded areas.

Many artists of the time attempted to tackle the fête galante style, and the Musée Jacquemart-André honors these artists with an exhibit called 'From Watteau to Fragonard, les Fêtes Galantes.' With their works, they represented sentiments of love and nonchalance, expressed by their subjects who were comfortably established within the upper echelons of society.

Sixty paintings are being displayed in the exhibition, which includes master painters such as Nicolas Lancret and Honoré Fragonard. Their style was inspired by Venetian pastoral paintings, showing couples in fields as they enjoyed themselves in a refined lifestyle. The paintings themselves are elegant and refined, following a rococo style.

As a result, visitors can get a comprehensive introduction to an art movement that provides an interesting snapshot of a specific era in French culture.