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Paris Exhibitions Not to Miss this Month: July 2019

  • Courtesy of Erwin Olaf And Galerie Rabouan Moussion


We've found the magic formula to work on your sun tan AND enjoy Paris cultural life! It's called gallery hopping. The programming happens to be excellent this summer, here are our picks!

Summer is here! After months and months of grey skies it’s hard to resist the urge to do nothing on a café terrace or wander in the streets of Paris rather than lock yourself up in a museum…

But why not enhance your Parisian summertime stroll with some gallery hopping? We’ve designed a perfect July afternoon for you, exploring the best gallery shows of the month in Paris’s most photogenic and artsiest neighborhood: Le Marais!

We also know that the weather can’t be trusted in Paris though, so in case of a heat wave or a sudden rainstorm, we also have a recommendation for a few hours safe from a capricious sky.

Annette Messager, Sleeping Songs

One of the most famous contemporary French female artists is currently exhibiting her latest body of work at the Marian Goodman Gallery. Annette Messager continues exploring human vulnerabilities, like our fear of isolation or our need for protection with this show, which also includes her first video installation, Lost in Limbos. This work is probably the most beautiful and disturbing piece of Sleeping Songs: plunged in a dark room, visitors distinguish fragments of women’s bodies appearing in the corners – a pregnant belly, long red hair, with hands lovingly caressing them. Mesmerizing.

Be sure not to miss the artist’s latest series of drawings either, on exhibition just across the street in the excellent Marian Goodman bookshop!

On show until July 19.

Marian Goodman Gallery
79 Rue Vielle-du-Temple, 75003 Paris
Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri, Sat: 11:00 – 19:00
Sun, Mon: Closed

Annette Messager ‘Sleeping Songs’ Vue de l’Exposition, Photo: Margaux Brugvin

Erwin Olaf, Palm Springs

If you only see one exhibition this month, this is the one to see! Photographer Erwin Olaf is celebrating the 40th anniversary of his career in his Parisian gallery with a sublime new series of work entitled Palm Springs.

The photographer came back to his love for the 60’s aesthetic with a series of what appear to be perfect Californian scenes at first glance. Stand a little bit longer in front of one of the photographs, however, and a surge of angst will seize you. Something’s going really wrong in the story Erwin Olaf’s telling us. The grass around the pool is dead, the hills are naked, a shredded American flag hangs in a tree, and the subjects look like perfectly dressed wax statues…

What does it all mean? Well, It’s up to you to decipher the references and enigmas hiding in these elegant images.

On show until July 27.

Galerie Rabouan Moussion
11 Rue Pastourelle, 75003 Paris
Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri, Sat: 10:00 – 19:30
Sun, Mon: Closed
Free entry

Erwin Olaf At The Pool 2018 Courtesy of Erwin Olaf And Galerie Rabouan Moussion

Eliott Erwitt, Round Trip > Paris, New York

Elliott Erwitt is one of the founding fathers of street photography. We all know his clichés: a man with an umbrella jumping in front of the Eiffel Tower, the silhouette of an elegant woman admiring the beauty of a misty New York from the roof of the Rockefeller Center, and – above all – his endless collection of comic dogs from around the world. The Polka Gallery offers a retrospective on the 90-year-old artist this summer, in the aim of highlighting the wittiness of this iconic figure of photography.

It’s the perfect show to end your artsy afternoon and get inspired before sitting on a terrace for some people watching!

On show until July 27.

Polka Galerie
12-14 Rue Saint-Gilles, 75003 Paris
Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri, Sat: 10:00 – 19:30
Sun, Mon: Closed

Eliott Erwitt Paris 1970 Courtesy of Eliott Erwitt And Magnum

Dora Marr

Last month, we shared with you our excitement for the changing perspective on art history that is occurring right now in French museums… Well, this exhibition is definitely part of this movement!

It took two female curators to finally rehabilitate Dora Marr as a major figure of Modern Art. For years she has been reduced to the position of Picasso’s muse and lover. We must admit that we too knew more of her spiral into insanity after Picasso left her than of her work as an artist… However, Dora Marr happened to have a brilliant career of her own, both as a fashion photographer (even though she didn’t want this part of her work to be known) and as a recognized surrealist artist.

The largest retrospective of her work yet is featured at the Centre Pompidou this summer. You’ll discover a strange gallery of weird creatures and odd photographs, part of the fascinating universe depicted by a complex and clever woman. Picasso himself described her as Kafkaesque and incredibly intelligent, almost “as if she were a man,” according to him… No wonder she became crazy after their eight-year relationship!

On show until July 29.

Centre Georges Pompidou
Place Georges Pompidou, 75004 Paris
Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat, Sun: 11:00 – 21:00
Thursday: 11:00 – 23:00
Closed on Tuesdays
Tickets: 14€

Dora Marr Untitled 1934 Courtesy of Centre Pompidou

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