Paris 1900 The City of Fashion, Luxury and Night Entertainment

A couple of days ago I took the opportunity to visit the ongoing exhibition at the Petit Palais Musée des Beaux-Arts in Paris titled, Paris 1900, The City of Entertainment, and described as "an invitation to the public to relive the splendour of the French capital at the time when the Paris Exposition Universelle was heralding the arrival of the 20th century". It runs until August 17th. Overall it was an excellent exhibition with some 600 beautiful works on display including a rich array of original vintage posters by some of the great artists of the day. 

In 1900 Paris was celebrating a new-found stability and was experiencing great optimism. France was economically thriving and was a global strength on the political scene. Paris was a magnet for the world's wealthy and powerful, offering every imaginable pleasure to lovers of luxury, gastronomy and entertainment. As host to the Universal Exposition marking the beginning of a new century, the French capital was ready to take on the role of the world's greatest city. This spectacular event, which absolutely amazed the world, allowed visitors to discover multiple facets of Paris: Art Nouveau, fashion, the arts, and of course entertainment and night life. This was the biggest event of its kind. Under the banner "Achievements of the Century" the exposition attracted 51 million visitors.

Here are some highlights from the exhibition with specific focus on the extraordinary original posters on display. One can definitely see the excitement, optimism, glamour and overall feeling of magic many were experiencing going into the new century.

Georges Leroux (1887-1957), Palais de l'Optique. La grande lunette de 1900

Albert Dorfinant (1881-1976), La Grande Roue de Paris, 1900

Rene Pean (1875-1955), Paris en 1400, reconstitution de la Cour des Miracles, 1899

Ernst Heilemann (1870-1936), Grands Hotels du Trocadero..., 1900

Louis Galice (1864-1935), La Grande Attraction nouvelle de l'Exposition. Ballon Cineorama..., 1900


Absolutely love these circa 1900 fans!

Manuel Orazi (1860-1934), L'Hippodrome, 1900

 Ferdinand Bach aka Bac (1859-1952), SCALA -Yvette Guilbert

Paul Louis Joseph Berthon (1872-1909), Folies Bergère Liane de Pougy, 1896

 Jules-Alexandre Grün (1868-1934), Bal Tabarin, 1904

Alphones Mucha (1860-1939), Sarah Bernhardt

 Alphonse Mucha (1860-1939), More amazing work for the actress Sarah Bernhardt

If you are lucky enough to be in Paris between now and August 17th, I definitely recommend a visit to check out this exhibition. Tip: To avoid the incredibly long lineups you see in the above photo, pre-purchase your tickets on the Petit Palais website.

As an alternative, have a browse through Rue Marcellin's selection of rare, original circa 1900 and other posters.

Posted: May 15, 2014 | Tagged: Art Nouveau, Expo 1900, Fashion, France, Luxury, Paris

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