UPDATE SAT 19/10: You can still join! Meeting time KBC Bank Place Schuman at 11h45.
What do you do as the world’s largest and most prestigious museum if you have way too many amazing artefacts to put on display? Indeed, you branch out and showcase them in other places. In 2015 the Louvre opened up a museum in Abu Dhabi, and in 2012 in Lens, a small former mining city 200km North of Paris. Lucky for us this stunning museum is just two hours driving from Brussels. Expat Club went to this remarkable museum a few times before in the earlier days of our community (2013-2015). But with so many art lovers, we will return to the Louvre Lens. A one-hour guided tour through the stunning Galerie du temps, a remarkable collection that spans artworks from 5.000 years of history, is included in the visit. This time we also offer a special 1,5 hours “le chefs-d’oeuvre” tour through the same collection (limited spots!). A visit to the temporary exhibition “Pologne: 1840-1918, painting the soul of a nation” (under the patronage of Presidents Emmanuel Macron and Andrzej Duda) is included for everyone who joins the trip.
What is included?
Transportation by 4* luxury coach
Entrance fees Louvre-Lens Museum: Galleries du Temps
Entrance fees temporary exhibition “Pologne: 1840-1918, painting the soul of a nation”
A 1-hour professionally guided tour of the Galleries du Temps
A great group of international people
A lifetime expat memory
Bus departure points
Place Schuman (bus stop next to KBC bank on roundabout)
La Chasse (bus stop on Chaussée d’Auderghem, right before intersection)
Metro Delta (bus stop on Avenue Beaulieu next to Metro exit)
Metro Hermann-Debroux (long bus stop “under elevated highway” next to Loxam)
Who can join?
Expat Club is known for welcoming a wide variety of international people on its trips. This creates a special, open-minded, safe and friendly environment in which everyone should feel comfortable.
Expat Club loves welcoming the youngest expats! If you want to bring your child(ren) up until 18 years, please first add the regular adult ticket(s) to the cart and then go to the cart page. On the cart page, there is a child ticket available for just €45. This trip is particularly interesting for teenagers with an interest in art.
The main hall with the entrances to the Galleries du Temps and the temporary exhibit hall, as well as the restaurant, gift shop and the storage and restoration area | by Jean-Pierre Dalbera (own work), via Wikipedia Commons
The Galleries du Temps | by Jean-Pierre Dalbera (own work), via Wikipedia Commons
Housed on a former mining wasteland, the Louvre-Lens Museum is a result of a long decision making process to decentralise art over France and away from its capital Paris (= spread more equally). Inspired by Bilbao, an industrial town in the Basque country, which transformed itself partially as a result of the opening of the Guggenheim museum, the opening of this magnificent Louvre subsidiary is a major boost for the city and the region.
While of course incomparable in size to its big brother in Paris, the Louvre-Lens is definitely a mature museum in all aspects. This new art institution is surrounded by a park that pays respect to Lens’ mining history. The mine shaft has been preserved, just like the historical entrance gate.
The museum itself consists of several large halls made of glass and other modern materials. The contrast with the displayed art cannot be greater, but a harmonious convergence of old and new has been achieved.
The main Galleries du Temps is not less than 3000 square meters without any divisions as in traditional museums. “The Louvre-Lens will stress what brings civilisations together and what unites artistic practices.” Under one roof you can find here Egyptian, Etruscan, Greek, Roman,Islamic, Christian and Oriental arts and antiquities, as well as many sculptures, paintings and a range of other artifacts. It’s almost as overwhelming as the Louvre museum itself…
During our trip today we will have ample time to discover both the permanent collection and the temporary exhibition on Poland. Upon arrival you will receive a portable audio & video guide with which you can look up all artworks. You can even select one of several self-guided tours with a theme of your choice. However, for this trip we arranged two private guides for our group who will take us through the Galleries du Temps. The first guide is an expert guide who will take an hour for an overview tour.
Gallerie du Temps
The Gallery of Time is the veritable heart of the Louvre-Lens. A continuous open space covering 3,000 square metres, it is home to 200 masterpieces loaned by the Musée du Louvre. The chronological display extends from the 4th millennium BC to the mid 19th century and offers an original journey through the history of art and humanity. Intermixing periods, techniques and civilizations, it enables visitors to see and rediscover the Louvre’s collections in a new way. The Gallery of Time is curated by Jean-Luc Martinez, president and director of the Musée du Louvre, and Vincent Pomarède, director of cultural and outreach programming at the Musée du Louvre. (source: Louvre Lens website).
The year 2019 marks the Centennial Anniversary of the convention between France and Poland regarding emigration and immigration, which led to a massive influx of Polish workers in France and especially in the mining regions of the North (such as Lens). In less than a decade 280.000 work contracts were signed as a result of this treaty. To commemorate this event for the identity of this region, the Louvre-Lens in collaboration with the National Museum of Warsaw propose a great retrospective on the Polish paintings of the 19th century.
Pologne 1840-1918, painting the soul of a nation
The exhibition traces this very special moment in the history of Polish culture, where despite the division of the country between the Russian Empire, the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia, artists created a true Polish identity. It presents the way in which artists, inspired by national history, landscapes and the peasantry, shaped images of Poland for the Poles but also for the rest of the world. Generous and evocative, their paintings are often at the forefront of the European pictorial modes of the time. Thanks to prestigious loans from Polish national museums, the exhibition brings together about 120 paintings – dated between 1835 and 1914 – of the greatest names in Polish painting, such as Jan Matejko, Josef Chelmonski, Jacek Malczewski and Wojciech Kossak. (source: Louvre-Lens website)