Histoires de photographies exhibition at the MAD until 12th December 2021

For the first time, the Museum of Decorative Arts is showing part of its huge collection of photos (350,000!) featuring fashion, architecture, interior design, landscapes and advertisement from 1840 to the present day,with shots from Atget, Man Ray, Cecil Beaton, Robert Doisneau, Bettina Rheims…

Founded in 1846, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs has always included photography in its collections, but usually in addition to other works, not as the main attraction. Apart from a few exhibitions, like the first French retrospectives of Henri Cartier-Bresson in 1955 or Jacques Henri Lartigue in 1975, most of their huge stock of photos has never been seen.

Now, after nearly 175 years, the collection is being celebrated for its intrinsic value with the exhibition Histoires de photographies presented in six themed, chronological sections:

The search for models

The other and the elsewhere

Ruins and foundations

Editing and documenting modernism

The recognition of photography, and

Photographing fashion

Histoires de photographies exhibition at the MAD until 12th December 2021
Raimund von Stillfried, Samurai. Photo : MAD Paris / Jean Tholance
Histoires de photographies exhibition at the MAD until 12th December 2021
Paul Nadar, Entrée du mausolée de Shadi Mulk-Aka dans la nécropole Chakhi Zinda Samarkand. Photo: MAD Paris / Christophe Dellière
Histoires de photographies exhibition at the MAD until 12th December 2021
David Seidner, Modèle d’Yves Saint Laurent, Vogue Italia. Photo: MAD Paris / Christophe Dellière

To delve deeper into the exhibition, there are several workshops for kids between the ages of 7 and 10 (Photo sensible, Photo modèle…) and guided visits for all ages, as well as a photo contest Mon photo-roman 2021 for 18-30 year-olds, who are invited to “choose, invent, tell, write or film [their] story of photography”.

A catalogue of the exhibition is also available (272 pages, 350 illustration, £37 here at amazon.co.uk).

Catalogue from the Histoires de photographies exhibition at the MAD until 12th December 2021
Histoires de photographies exhibition at the MAD until 12th December 2021

The exhibition Histoires de photographies is at the Museum of Decorative Arts (here) until 12th December 2021

Open Tuesday-Sunday, 11am-6pm (9pm Thursdays)

Admission: 14€ / 10€ / free for anyone under 26

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

What3Words ///lifted.geology.gravel