Impressionism was born in Normandy
- Claude Monet produced more than half of his work in Normandy, and spent half of his life at Giverny. Other Impressionist painters such as Renoir, Pissarro, Degas, Manet, Sisley, and Boudin also created major works in Normandy.
- The Impressionist theme can be used as a basis for packages across the whole of the Normandy region, including Giverny, Rouen, the Seine Valley, Le Havre, Etretat and the Alabaster Coast, the Dieppe area, Honfleur and the Côte Fleurie, Caen, Cherbourg and the Cherbourg Peninsula…
Artists known the world over
- Normandy has inspired artists of worldwide renown: Camille Pissaro, Claude Monet, Auguste Renoir, Gustave Caillebotte, Berthe Morisot, Gustave Courbet, Paul Gauguin, Edouard Manet, Jean-François Millet, Paul Signac, Mary Cassatt, Edgar Degas, Georges Seurat, Eugène Boudin, Johan Barthold Jongkind, Alfred Sisley , and others.
A subject with wide appeal
- A theme with paintings which are famous throughout the world.
- A subject which is easily accessible to all, from schoolchildren to art lovers.
- Impressionist exhibitions in the world’s greatest museums attract hundreds of thousands of visitors every year.
Normandy’s museums abound in masterpieces
Large permanent collections
- After the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, the museums of Rouen and Le Havre boast two of the largest collections of Impressionist paintings in France.
- Many other collections can be seen in Normandy’s museums, notably at Giverny, Vernon, Honfleur, Caen, Dieppe and Cherbourg.
- Also of note, the Painting in Normandy collection exhibited at the Council House of the Lower Normandy region in Caen.
Major international events
- The Normandy Impressionist Festival takes place every three years, and has attracted almost one million visitors to its museums during its first two seasons.
This multidisciplinary event unveils Impressionism in all its forms across the whole of Upper and Lower Normandy. Painting, as well as contemporary art, music, cinema, theatre, dance, photography, video, literature, son et lumière, outdoor eating, traditional “guinguettes” (cafés with dancing) – the event is as much festive as cultural. The third Festival will take place between April and September 2016, on the theme of “Impressionist Portraits”.
- Major temporary exhibitions on Impressionism take place every year in Normandy’s museums, notably at the Museum of Impressionism, Giverny, in collaboration with the Musée d'Orsay.
Unusual tourism related activities
- A variety of activities are avaialble, accessible to everyone: Impressionist walks, outdoor dining, boat trips, cookery workshops, painting courses, flights over the Seine Valley, son et lumière, and more.
An easily accessible destination
- Close to Paris and its airports.
- Easy access to Normandy in an hour or two from Paris, depending on means of transport (eg Giverny is less than an hour away)
- Day trips, or excursions lasting several days are feasible
- Many of Normandy’s touristic highlights are close to Impressionist sites (the Mont Sant-Michel, Normandy Landing beaches, Jumièges Abbey etc)
- Tours can be extended by including Paris’s Impressionist museums (Orsay, Orangerie, Marmottan, Monet).
The good life in Normandy
- An unspoilt natural landscape with wonderful scenery (the Alabaster Coast, the Seine Valley, the Pays d’Auge, the Cherbourg Peninsula…), as well as magnificent gardens including Claude Monet’s house and the water lily gardens at Giverny.
- A region to be explored at your own pace: aboard a boat along the Seine, during hikes along hedge-lined tracks, along the shore, on the cliffs…
- Famous Normandy produce and cuisine: scallops, butter, cream, Camembert, apples, cider and Calvados…
- Quality hotels, suitable for all budgets.