Normandy’s museums are arguably among the best in France and, this year, the region is hosting five exciting new exhibitions that are well worth seeing should you find yourself here over the summer. From Giverny to Granville, don’t miss the chance to enjoy first-hand the works of Normandy greats like Claude Monet, Gustave Flaubert and Christian Dior!

1) Monet / Rothko at the Musée des impressionnismes in Giverny

In recent years, research on Late Impressionism has highlighted the often-unsuspected correspondences between the works of Claude Monet and those of abstract painters, including Mark Rothko. The Monet / Rothko exhibition will highlight the evocative power of these two great artists’ painting.
While Monet seeks to convey the immediacy of a feeling, Rothko attempts a more intense approach, where contemplation expands thought. Connecting Mark Rothko and Claude Monet means inviting the public to a visual and sensory experience. Visitor’s eyes, but also their perception of space and time, are subjected to an original artistic test.
The exhibition will bring together six works by Rothko and seven paintings by Monet. Declined in chromatic themes, it will show the paintings of these two masters in an unprecedented light. Where the fleeting impression of the moment was Monet’s obsession, Rothko diluted space in the time of observation. Vertigo or contemplation, the exhibition will let the public find another perception of abstraction and modernity.

Musée des Impressionnistes, Giverny
Musée des Impressionnistes, Giverny © Nos Coeurs Voyageurs

Summer of a collection at the Musée des impressionnismes in Giverny

This summer, the musée des impressionnismes Giverny is offering a new presentation of its collections. From Impressionism to contemporary art, “Summer of a collection” will allow the public to discover little-known works and recent acquisitions, for a peaceful moment between nature and art.

Useful information

Monet / Rothko
18 March – 3 July 2022

Summer of a collection
14 July – 2 October 2022

Musée des Impressionnismes
99 rue Claude Monet, 27620 Giverny

Standard ticket: €9 / €6
Concessions : €6 / €4,5
Under 18s: Free
Ticket includes access to all exhibitions and museum gardens

Open every day, 10am-6pm

2) “Dior Hats! From Christian Dior to Stephen Jones” at the Christian Dior Museum in Granville

From 1947, when he founded his fashion house, Christian Dior made hats an integral element of Dior style, French Haute Couture and international fashion. The Dior Haute Mode workshop, entirely dedicated to creating hats, has remained active throughout the fashion house’s seven decades of history. Since 1996, the great British milliner Stephen Jones has kept this tradition alive and fresh, through his work for the successive artistic directors at Dior, including Maria Grazia Chiuri today.

In 2022, the Christian Dior Museum is devoting all of its exhibition rooms to the creative power and craftsmanship of Dior hats. This exhibition is a first. The exceptional collection of around two hundred hats and around thirty Dior Haute Couture dresses includes pairings that create the “total look”. These are complemented by around fifty fashion photographs and beauty or make-up magazines celebrating the art of hats.

Christian Dior Museum exhibition
© Sølve Sundsbø / Art + Commerce

Useful information

Dior Hats! From Christian Dior to Stephen Jones
Mid-April 30 September 2022

Christian Dior Museum Granville
Villa Les Rhumbs, 1 rue d’Estouteville, 50400 Granville

Standard ticket: €9
Concessions: €7 (Groups of 12 or more, disabled people, jobseekers and students)
Under 12s: Free

Until 30 September 2022: Open every day, 10am-6:30pm
October 2022: Open Tuesday to Sunday and every day in school holidays,: Open 10am-12:30pm and 2pm-6pm. Last admission at 12pm and 5.30pm.

Please note that prices and times are subject to change.

3) Salmmbô: Fury! Passion! Elephants! at the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Rouen

Gustave Flaubert’s extraordinary novel Salammbô captures the imagination through the story of the fatal relationship between priestess Salammbô and Mathô, leader of the mercenaries who rebelled against Carthage. This new exhibition, entitled Salammbô: Fury! Passion! Elephants! has been curated as part of the this year’s bicentenary celebrations of Flaubert’s birth, and explores the impact that this novel made on the arts and the history of the Mediterranean. Combining fascinating archaeological masterpieces, paintings, and literary and cinematographic archives, this masterful exhibition will run until mid-September before moving on to Marseille then Tunis.

Useful information

Salammbô: Fury! Passion! Elephants!
19 May – 19 September 2021

Musée des Beaux-Arts de Rouen
Esplanade Marcel Duchamp*, 76000 Rouen

*Disabled visitor entrance: 26bis rue Jean Lecanuet, 76000 Rouen

Standard ticket: €9
Concessions : €6
Under 26s : Free

Open every day, 10am-6pm


Lacemaking, a delicate and technical art form, is celebrated in the southern Normandy town of Alençon; so much so that that its local stitching technique is UNESCO-listed! This year, the town’s Musée des Beaux-Arts et de la Dentelle is hosting a new exhibition called The Art of the Alençon Lacemakers which will give visitors an exciting and unprecedented insight into lacemaking through local works of art and case studies of local women passionate about lacemaking and eager to share their know-how. The museum will also hold the event Between the Threads, where contemporary artists will be able to learn all about the rich heritage of lacemaking and witness firsthand expert lacemaker Sandrine Pincemaille, which will be given carte blanche to create whatever she chooses.

Useful information

The Art of the Alençon Lacemakers
19 May – 19 September 2021

Between the Threads
19 May – 31 August 2021

Musée des Beaux-arts et de la Dentelle
Cour carrée de la Dentelle, 61000 Alençon

Tuesday-Friday: 10am-12pm and 2pm-6pm
Saturday-Sunday: 10am-12:30pm and 1:30pm-6pm
Mondays: Closed
July and August: Open every day
Entry to the exhibition is free


Housed in Deauville’s stunning new cultural centre, Les Franciscaines, the exhibition Masters of Colour in the 20th century showcases a number of special works of art that have rarely been seen by the general public. Housed in the centre’s magnificent Galerie des Maîtres, these works explore through bold pigments how colour has become fundamental to 20th-century art. From intense blacks to vibrant greens, reds and blues, this exciting exhibition  features masterpieces by artists like Pierre Soulages, Yves Klein, Marc Chagall, Sonia Delaunay, Fernand Léger, Joan Mitchell and many more.

Marc Chagall: Le quai de Bercy (private collection)

Useful information

Masters of Colour in the 20th Century
19 May – 18 September 2021

Les Franciscaines
145b avenue de la République, 14800 Deauville

Standard ticket: €5 (includes exhibition leaflet)
In school holidays (zones B and C): Open every day, 10:30am-6:30pm
In term time: Open Tuesday to Sunday, 10:30am-6:30pm

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