Explore portraiture through the ages with sculptures, paintings, drawings and engravings of emblematic figures such as Madame de Pompadour or Victor Hugo, or simply private individuals.
Cover image: Madame Vigée-Le Brun et sa fille, Jeanne-Lucie-louise, dite Julie, par Elisabeth Vigée-Le Brun
Queens, Kings and Emperors
The Musée du Louvre boasts a number of artworks illustrating royal power in all its forms. From objects associated with the Coronation to statues and portraits, kings, queens and emperors succeeded in imposing their image on the people through the arts.
Cover image: Relief de Séthi I et Hathor
Major Events in History
Many works in the collections of the Musée du Louvre depict key moments in the history of humanity. From the entry of Alexander the Great into Babylon to the proclamation of the French Republic, these dramatic moments have become a source of inspiration to many artists.
Cover image: Le serment des Horaces by Jacques-Louis David
Acquisitions made in 2020
THE LATEST ADDITIONS TO THE COLLECTIONS
Enriching the national collections is one of the Louvre’s core missions. Given the vast scope of its collections and the Louvre’s status as France’s leading museum, acquiring works is an important scientific and symbolic event. Acquired works are State property, and as such are inalienable and imprescriptible. Because it requires the use of public funds, acquiring works is a great responsibility.
Works are chosen after review by a 24-member Acquisitions Committee. The Committee meets once a month to examine all projects – both those subject to payment and those offered to the museum for free – put forward by the eight curatorial departments of the Louvre and the Musée National Eugène-Delacroix. The Committee expresses its opinion on the works, which are presented physically. Beyond a certain financial limit, the Artistic Council of National Museums is called upon to give its opinion.
Funding for acquisitions is provided by a percentage of revenue collected from entry fees to the permanent collections; it is therefore directly linked to museum attendance. Beyond this particular budget, gifts in the form of donations and bequests, payments in kind and revenues from patrons (individuals, Friends of the Louvre groups, corporate sponsors) also provide financial resources for acquiring artworks.
Cover image: statuette d'Apollon.
Masterpieces of the Louvre
Artworks essential to history and the history of art, masterpieces bear witness to the wealth of the Louvre’s collections and the wide range of artistic practices used around the world and through the ages.
Cover image: Le scribe accroupi
NATIONAL MUSEUMS RECOVERY
‘MNR’ works at the Musée du Louvre
After World War II, 61,000 works of art were retrieved in Germany and brought back to France. Many had been stolen from Jewish families. To date, more than 45,000 have been returned to their rightful owners. Unclaimed works were sold by the French State, with the exception of 2,143 objects placed under the legal responsibility of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and entrusted to French national museums for safekeeping. These works are not the property of the State. The Musée du Louvre, is committed to carrying out research to find their rightful owners or beneficiaries.
This group of works, designated by the acronym ‘MNR’ for Musées Nationaux Récupération (National Museums Recovery), is managed by the Musée du Louvre. Each type of collection has its own specific prefix: ER (Egyptian Antiquities), AGRR (Greek, Etruscan and Roman Antiquities), AOR (Near Eastern Antiquities and Islamic Art), REC (Prints and Drawings), RFR (Sculptures), OAR (Decorative Arts) and MNR (Paintings). There is no statute of limitations for restitution requests for these works ‘recovered after WWII, retrieved by the Office des Biens et Intérêts Privés and pending return to the legitimate owners’.
This album contains information and photographs of MNR works conserved at the Musée du Louvre.
Cover image: Tête de lionne, Théodore Géricault, MNR 137.