"Napoleon's Three Sisters, Italian lives" at the Musée Marmottan Monet in Paris
The Musée Marmottan Monet presents an unprecedented exhibition dedicated to Elisa, Pauline and Caroline – sisters of the Emperor Napoleon I, and princesses or queens in Italy.
140 important artworks loaned from Europe's leading museums and the private collections of the Bonaparte sisters' Italian and French descendants, capture the prestige and glamour of their private and public lives. Their remarkable destinies are explored here together for the first time, from their young womanhood in Paris as sisters of the First Consul, Napoleon Bonaparte, to their Italian reigns under the French Empire.
Paintings, sculptures, furniture, accessories, jewellery, bring to life the extraordinary destinies of Elisa (1777-1820), Princess of Piombino and Lucca and later Grand-Duchess of Tuscany; Pauline (1780-1825), wife of the Roman aristocrat Camillo Borghese; and Caroline (1782-1839), wife of General Joachim Murat, who reigned with him in unparalleled splendour at the court of Naples. Three women, with three very different personalities – one celebrated for her beauty, her sisters for their energy, charm and intelligence, all three witnessing and playing central roles in the events of their time.
Centred on Napoleon's coronation as Emperor, the exhibition explores the sisters' private and public roles, as wives and mothers, and princesses and queens of Italy – figureheads of the new Europe at the courts of Rome, Florence and Naples.
With generous support from institutions, private collections and leading museums, the exhibition is presented in the ideal setting of the Musée Marmottan Monet – the former private mansion of its founder, Paul Marmottan (1856-1932), himself a passionate collector of First Empire artworks and furniture. The displays include pieces from the French national collections at the palaces of Versailles, Fontainebleau and Malmaison, the Musée Fesch in Ajaccio on Napoleon's native island of Corsica, the Musée Fabre in Montpellier, the British embassy in Paris, the Musée de l'Armée, the museum of the Légion d'Honneur, the Musée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain in Liège, the Galleria Moderna di Palazzo Pitti in Florence, the Museo Napoleonico, the Museo Praz, and the Musei di Arte Medievale e Moderna in Rome, Turin, Naples, Lucca and Caserte, not forgetting the collections of the Musée Marmottan Monet itself.
This exhibition opens on October 3rd, 2013, bringing an important page of European history vividly to life from the unprecedented perspective of three of its most important women: the sisters of the Emperor Napoleon I.
- Open Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
- Evening opening Thursday until 8 p.m.
- Closed to the public on Monday
2 rue Louis-Boilly
Metro: La Muette – Line 9
RER: Boulainvilliers – Line C
Bus: 32, 63, 22, 52, P.C.
Admission fees and rates
- Standard: 10 €
- Concessions: 5 €
- Under 7 years old: Free
- Audioguide available in English, French and Japanese: 3 €