Côte D’Azur Culture Map: National Picasso Museum

There is so much more to the French Riviera than chilled rosé and sparkling sea views.

Laurent Van Hoegaerden, General Manager at l’Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc has loads of recommendations for guests seeking a cultural adventure while in Antibes. Laurent encourages his guests to experience the National Picasso Museum in Vallauris– a quick 20 minutes’ drive inland.

“The museum hides a treasure in its garden– a small chapel, the entire interior of which was painted by Picasso. This is a rare, intimate and really exceptional place where you can fully admire the artist’s work,” he explains.

The National Picasso Museum indeed offers a Picasso encounter like no other. The artist lived in Vallauris from 1948-1955, and it is here that he developed an interest in ceramics and pottery, creating thousands of pieces at the local Madoura ceramic studio. Several examples of his clay works are on display at the museum — including beautifully sculpted and colourful dishes, jugs and vases.

The collection also includes over 300 of the Spanish artist’s later paintings, as well as works by Joan Miró, Amedeo Modigliani, Alexander Calder and others. The hidden treasure that Laurent describes is Picasso’s most famous work at the site: the La Guerre et La Paix (War and Peace) chapel mural. This colourful, low-ceilinged tunnel provides an amazingly immersive view into the imagination of a true artistic genius. A must-see for modern art lovers.

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