NGA’s French Galleries Re-open Jan. 28 to Renewed Radiance and Delight

Pat Mica, Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.) and Victoria Sant, president, National Gallery of Art. | Robert Devaney

After two years of renovation, the National Gallery of Art will reopen its galleries devoted to impressionism and post-impressionism to the public on Saturday, Jan. 28. Housed in the west building of the gallery, the installation displays some of the greatest paintings by Manet, Monet, Renoir, Cézanne, Van Gogh and Gauguin on view anywhere.

On Jan. 25, the National Gallery held a preview of the reinstalled 19th-century French art along with a reception for special guests, friends and benefactors, who smiled anew at the familiar faces of Manet, Van Gogh, Gauguin and others.

“The gallery’s French impressionist and post-impressionist holdings, comprising nearly 400 paintings, are among the most prized in the collection, and rightly so,” said Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art. “While the appearance of these revered rooms has changed very little — preserving the conditions of light, the room proportions, and wall colors that make the gallery one of the great places to view art in the world — the paintings themselves will be shown in a newly innovative arrangement.”

Here’s how the gallery sums up the new installation: It is “organized into thematic, monographic, and art historical groupings. The ‘new’ Paris of the Second Empire and the Third Republic are highlighted through cityscapes by Manet, Renoir and Pissaro. Showcasing sun-dappled landscapes and scenes of suburban leisure, a gallery of “high impressionism” masterpieces of the 1870s is prominently located off the East Sculpture Hall, including such beloved works as Monet’s The Artist’s Garden at Vétheuil (1880) and Renoir’s Girl with a Hoop (1885). A gallery is devoted to the sophisticated color experiments of late Monet, while Cézanne’s genius in landscape, still-life, and figure painting is explored in another. Paintings exemplifying the bold innovations of Van Gogh and Gauguin are displayed along with Degas’ later, experimental works in one gallery, followed by a room of canvases by artists such as Delacroix, Renoir, and Matisse celebrating exoticism and the sensual use of color and paint handling. The final gallery is dedicated to the Parisian avant-garde circa 1900: Toulouse-Lautrec, Modigliani, Rousseau, and early Picasso.”

National Gallery Celebrates Reopening of Its French Galleries With Public Programs

The National Gallery of Art will celebrate the reopening of its galleries devoted to 19th-century French impressionist and post-impressionist painting with an array of public programs throughout the opening weekend of Jan. 28 to 29 — and later. Located on the main floor of the west building, the galleries will reopen to the public on Jan. 28, following a two-year renovation.

All programs are free of charge in the east building auditorium unless otherwise noted. Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information, visit

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