The old 'Prieuré' de Maurice Denis and its lush green landscape
[CLOSED FROM 31 JULY]
In order to make improvements to reception and working conditions and to undertake renovations, the Musée Maurice Denis will be closed temporarily from 31 July 2018. Reopening is planned for the second half of 2019.
Today listed as a 'Monument Historique', this imposing edifice, built in the late 17th century at the instigation of Madame de Montespan, was then a royal general hospital that provided care to the poor and needy. In 1914, the building was acquired by Maurice Denis, who already had a studio in its grounds. He renamed it 'Le Prieuré' and lived there with his family until his death.
The museum's early collection was formed from a generous donation by Denis' family in 1976. Since then, the collection has been enriched with numerous donations and acquisitions of works by Symbolist painters and 'Les Nabis' – a group of avant-garde, late 19th-century artists. So, works by Denis, depicting religious, family and intimist scenes and Italian and Breton landscapes, are exhibited alongside paintings by Sérusier, Bonnard, Ranson and Vuilliard – among other friends of the artist.
The museum sits in a terraced, hillside garden, which is an inviting place to stroll, with its varied landscapes and splendid botanical trail. Around the museum, one level, adorned with sculptures by Antoine Bourdelle – a close friend of the house's owner – is formed of a shady courtyard and a long terrace lined with hundred-year-old lime and yew trees. From there, you reach the rose walk and a huge outdoor theatre surrounded by large trees. Stretching out further down are an old orchard and kitchen garden adorned with a pool and fountain.
A wander through this peaceful garden will help you better understand the importance of nature in the painter's life and work.
Today, this garden space is the privileged setting for fine-art studios and open-air concerts.
Free entry for children < 26 years.
Full price: 4.50€
Reduced admission fee: 2.50€ (over 60s, large families, groups of 10+)
Free admission: under 26s, practising teachers, unemployed, RMI /RSA recipients, group guides, carers accompanying disabled persons, journalists (on presentation of a press pass), ICOM members, Museum-Pass holders, Conseil général des Yvelines staff members.
Free admission for all on the first Sunday of every month.
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