In the Realm of the Senses exhibitions at the Cognacq-Jay Museum, 19th May – 18th July 2021

Ready to open as soon as the lockdown allows, the Cognacq-Jay Museum has a new exhibition about saucy, horny and positively licentious love… as seen in 18th century art!

The Age of Enlightenment inspired a lot of painters to explore subjects without any filter, and love was of course a favourite subject for many of them.

Using the 250th anniversary of the death of artist François Boucher as an excuse, the exhibition IN the Realm of the Sense, from François Boucher to Jean-Baptiste Greuze contains over a hundred drawings, paintings and engravings, many of which are being shown for the first time in France.

In the Realm of the Senses exhibitions at the Cognacq-Jay Museum, 19th May - 18th July 2021
© The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts

As you will see, love was omnipresent in 18th century art – as well as theatre, philosophy and novels – more than in any other era. Expect scenes of shepherds and shepherdesses, lush boudoirs, stolen kisses in alcoves…

A lot of these erotic paintings show women in states of undress (or in ‘the simplest of attire’), but other images may well surprise you or even make you blush…

In the Realm of the Senses exhibitions at the Cognacq-Jay Museum, 19th May - 18th July 2021
© Gilles Berquet

The exhibition also offers:

— a video about the sings and codes in 18th century art,

— a surprising map of saucy spots in Paris back in the day,

— a cycle of conferences,

— guided visits, and even a ‘flash visit’ (in French) lasting 30 minutes, on Saturdays at 2pm and 3pm,

— workshops, including one in French Sign Language, and

— a catalogue of the exhibition (152 pages, 107 illustrations, 30€) available here at amazon

In the Realm of the Senses exhibitions at the Cognacq-Jay Museum, 19th May - 18th July 2021
© Banque de France

The exhibition In the Realm of the Senses, from François Boucher to Jean-Baptiste Greuze is at the Cognacq-Jay Museum (here) from 19th May – 18th July 2021

Open Tuesday-Sunday, 10am-6pm (9pm Friday)

Admission: 8€ / 6€

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Bonus! This video by Paris Musées, the organisation that the Cognacq-Jay Museum belongs to, is quite fun!