Musée de l’Orangerie, Paris
3 October 2012 – 21 January 2013
Jardin Tuileries, 75001 Paris
01 44 77 80 07

The Musée de l’Orangerie has Europe’s largest collection of works by the Russian painter Chaïm Soutine (1893-1943). Twenty two were in the collection of art dealer Paul Guillaume, whose passionate interest in this painter began in 1922, when he was captivated by the Expressionist style of Soutine’s painting “in which reason and madness struggle and find a balance”. They form the core of this wide-ranging monographic exhibition that brings together around 70 paintings, thanks to exceptional loans from major public and private collections.
Almost forty years after Soutine’s retrospective in this same location (Orangerie des Tuileries, 1973), the exhibition sheds new light on this major figure of modern art, whose work has never been fully appreciated in France.

Covering the painter’s career in France between the wars, the exhibition is laid out thematically, highlighting his obsessive practice of painting in series. After an introduction with portraits of the artist, his friends in Montparnasse and patrons, it is then arranged in three sections focusing on the major genres found in the artist’s tormented paintings: landscape, still life and the human figure.