Musée d’Orsay’s “Dream Archive” Travels to Vienna

Edgar Degas After Bathing (1858/86) Photo: Musée d'Orsay, Paris via ORF

Vienna’s Albertina Museum is hosting a special exhibition featuring 130 drawings on loan from Paris’ Musée d’Orsay, ORF reports.

At a press conference last Thursday the director of the Musée d’Orsay, Guy Cogeval, explained that a lack of space prevented his institution from doing justice to its 67,000-strong collection of drawings.

“We hope that one day we will have sufficient space for them,” he said, adding that due to conservatory restrictions, the museum had to enforce time constraints on the display of the works. Consequently, apart from Paris’ Musée de l’Orangerie which has been given a portion of the drawings, the pieces can only be loaned to one other institution. The director of the Albertina, Klaus Albrecht Schröder, said he was delighted that Cogeval chose the Viennese museum.

Schröder called the Musée d’Orsay’s collection, which includes drawings by Degas, Cezanne, and Seurat, “a dream archive,” and said that it showed “the richness France’s 19th century art history and the richness of the treasures of this museum.”

For the exhibition, Albertina’s curator Werner Spies chose works which include “masterpieces, but also many unknown works that magically attracted me,” he said. His selection features pastels by Degas and Seurat, gouaches by Daumier and Moreau , and watercolors by Cezanne. Lesser known artists such as Felicien Rops and Carlos Schwabe are also included. According to Schröder, these loans fill the Albertina’s “most significant void.”

Das Archiv Der Träume Aus Dem Musée d’Orsay runs until May 3 at the Albertina Museum, Vienna.

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