Modern Life in France in the Nineteenth Century

The Nationalmuseum’s collection of 19th-century French art is broad in scope. It contains works ranging from the classically inspired art of the Napoleonic era, via the new plein air painting, to the curvy art nouveau style in applied art and the Impressionist preoccupation with light and colour. The exhibition illustrates the development of society and the emergence of modern life in France in the nineteenth century. The years between the French Revolution in 1789 and the start of the First World War in 1914 were an eventful and turbulent period. Industrialization accelerated, many people moved from rural communities into the cities, citizens revolted, and democracy evolved. With these changes came new ways of looking at people and society, at the natural world and the city. All of this had an impact on art, which in turn had an impact on people and society. The artworks featured in the exhibition present a comprehensive survey of this tumultuous time. Subject matter touching on various contemporary issues and historical events provides a wider and deeper perspective. Painting, drawing, photography, sculpture and applied art appear side by side. Visitors can see works by artists such as Claude Monet, Emile Gallé, Edouard Manet, Berthe Morisot, August Rodin and Gustave Courbet.