Impressionist paintings by Monet, Degas, Renoir are at Old Town Square’s Kinsky Palace
Camille Pissarro, A Corner in the Garden, Éragny, 1897 © Ordupgaard, Copenhagen / Photo Anders Sune Berg

Impressionist paintings by Monet, Degas, Renoir are at Old Town Square’s Kinsky Palace

A large exhibit of 60 French Impressionist paintings has opened at Kinsky Palace on Old Town Square, and runs to Oct. 13.

The show, called French Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Ordrupgaard Collection, is the largest of its type ever staged by National Gallery Prague.



Key works in the show are by Claude Monet, Edgar Degas, Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro and Berthe Morisot. There is also an overview of French painting of the 19th and early 20th centuries before and after Impressionism with works by Eugène Delacroix, Gustave Courbet, Camille Corot and Édouard Manet as well as Post-Impressionist works by Paul Cézanne and Paul Gauguin.

“I dare say that the opportunity to see such a comprehensive collection of French Impressionism in the Czech Republic may never occur on such a scope again. The fact is that museums are not always willing to lend works by these distinguished artists; arranging a loan of even one canvas can take many months and even years, and some chefs-d’oeuvre never leave their place at all,” exhibition curator Petr Šámal said.

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monet waterloo bridge
Claude Monet, Waterloo Bridge, Overcast, 1903 © Ordupgaard, Copenhagen / Photo Anders Sune Berg

The collection, from the Danish state-owned museum at Ordrupgaard, was created by the businessman and art patron Wilhelm Hansen in the 1920s. Putting the collection together required some insight.

“Today, French Impressionists are the pride and joy of every museum. However, purchasing their artworks required considerable courage and collecting intuition in their day. Wilhelm Hansen was a champion of French art collecting in the Scandinavian countries. During and shortly after World War I, Wilhelm created a collection of paintings that is unparalleled in Scandinavia,” Šámal added.

Hansen, a Danish insurance magnate, soon opened his collection to the public and later bequeathed it to the Danish State. The National Gallery Prague is now presenting it to visitors in Central Europe for the very first time.

Morisot Marie Hubbard,
Berthe Morisot, Woman with a Fan. Portrait of Madame Marie Hubbard, 1874 © Ordupgaard, Copenhagen / Photo Anders Sune Berg

The Ordrupgaard Museum is closed for renovations and has decided to lend the collection, rather than have it sit unseen in storage.

Prior to Prague, it was shown in France, Canada and Switzerland. The exhibition “French Impressionism: Masterpieces from the Ordrupgaard Collection” will be on view at Kinsky Palace of the National Gallery Prague from June 29 to October 13, 2019.

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The exhibition will be open daily, including Mondays, from 10 am to 6 pm; on Wednesdays and Saturdays till 8 pm.

The exhibition is a collaboration between the National Gallery Prague and the Danish state-owned art museum at Ordrupgaard.

For more information visit https://www.ngprague.cz/exposition-detail/francouzsky-impresionismus

Raymond Johnston

Prague-based journalist with over three decades of media experience writing about culture, business, and travel. Folktale and legend expert, and avid photographer. Follow him on Instagram at @raymondjohnston4 or visit his blog magicbohemia.com.

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