For the first time ever, treasures will travel from Versailles, France to Canberra, Australia to entice visitors into a world of power, passion and luxury through an epic exhibition.
Versailles: Treasures from the Palace, which will be on show at the National Gallery of Australia (NGA) in Canberra from this December, is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see and experience a mesmerising period in French history.
More than 130 paintings, intricate tapestries, gilded furniture, monumental statues, objects from the Royal gardens and sumptuous treasures from the Palace of Versailles will bring to life the reigns of three kings, their queens and mistresses in a fascinating and tumultuous period of French history.
“We are delighted to bring the grandeur of the culture of Versailles exclusively to Canberra and make it possible for all Australians to access and appreciate the social, political and cultural aspects of this unique phenomenon. If ever absolute power can be expressed through unbridled opulence, this is it,” said Gerard Vaughan, NGA Director.
The exhibition will celebrate the lives, loves and passions of the people of Versailles through a full program of activities including music performances, children’s programs and public events.
“Along with astonishing treasures, like the marble bust of Louis XIV, or the glamorous formal portrait of Marie-Antoinette, we are bringing to Australia the entire 1.5 tonne statue of Latona and her children from one of the main fountains of the Palace of Versailles,” said Dr Vaughan.
“The authenticity of this cultural experience will leave a lasting imprint on all our visitors. We are thrilled to be working with Versailles to bring exclusively to Canberra a truly astonishing exhibition.”
The exhibition contrasts small personal items, such as the precious golden reliquary which belonged to Louis XIV’s mother, or Marie-Antoinette’s hand-crafted chair and harp, with huge works including six-metre tapestries from the most important Gobelins series ever produced for Louis XIV, and a monumental conversation piece of the Sourches family which requires individual freight.
Versailles: Treasures from the Palace opens at the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra on Friday 9 December 2016 until Monday 17 April 2017. Tickets are on sale now at Ticketek: http://bit.ly/29Otk93