Hotel de Caumont: A true temple of Bon Goût
Chers Amis de L’Ecole du Bon Goût,
Recently I motored with two friends to Aix en Provence and had a major ‘Bon Goût’ experience!!
We visited a relatively new museum called “Caumont Centre D’Art.” The experience there ranged in time from the early 18th century to the late 19th century.
The museum is housed in a veritable Provençale palace, circa 1715, set in its original courtyards and gardens right in the center of Aix. Such an intact survival is rare even for less sumptuous resistances!
The 19th century part of the experience was an extensive exhibition of oil paintings by Sisley borrowed from museums and collectors from around the world and shown in their temporary exhibition galleries.
If you visit Provence, please give yourself a real treat with a visit to this major ‘Temple of Bon Gout’!
Merci cordialement, Robert
François Rolland de Reauville (1658-1718) commissioned Robert de Cotte, the last head architect for Louis XIV, to design a residence and garden for him in Aix en Provence. The first stone was laid on the 4th of April 1715. The property was inherited and sold multiple times until it was purchased in 2010 by the current owner: Culturespaces
The original front steps are of very large slabs of a weathered stone looking very much like the Old Heritage Beige stone paving available at Au Vieux Paris SVP!
The sign is directing visitors to the major exhibition of oil paintings by Sisley. It was beautifully displayed with all the very latest in art gallery presentation technology but photos were not permitted.
The entrance hall and its ‘cage escallier’ (staircase) is bigger than many entire town houses! The forged iron stair railing was most deservingly classified as a French National Monument in 1925.
This is only two of the three levels of this magnificent ‘cage escallier’!
This Louis XV fireplace chimney, most probably made in Avignon circa 1760, is nearly identical to 2 marble chimneys available at Au Vieux Paris Antiques.
Louis XV chandelier in the Salon Chinois which is one of the four delicious ground floor rooms of period architectural décor and furnishings used as the “Cafe Caumont” where lunch and refreshments are served in truly luxurious style!! Note: several similar chandeliers are available now at Au Vieux Paris Antiques, SVP!
Of all the abundant art hung on the walls, the late 17th C and early 18th C portraits were my top favorites, all in terrific bois doré frames, SVP.
The original gardens were designed by the architect for the structure, M. Robert de Cotte, and have been beautifully duplicated recently.
View from the front doors across an entrance court of beautiful “pave” (cobblestone) similar to the pave for sale at Au Vieux Paris Antiques.