|Interior of Carrières de Lumières © Culturespaces|
Then guess what the subject matter of show is–the art of Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gaugin! The focus is on the similarities and differences of their artwork, especially their use of color, across time and place.
|Simulation of exhibit “Gauguin, Van Gogh, les peintres de la lumière” © G. Iannuzi|
Paris and eventually to the South of France. Even their correspondence with one another and with others is projected up on the walls. The show concludes with the increasing contrasts in their approach to art when Gaugin went to the South Pacific and van Gogh stayed in France, most of that time in treatment for his mental illness.
|Exhibit featuring Paul Gaugin artwork © G. Iannuzi – M. Siccardi|
The quarries have long been known for their multimedia shows. Called “The Cathedral of Images,” earlier audio-visual shows were also devoted to particular artists: Cezanne (2006), van Gogh (2008), and Picasso (2009) as well as other lesser known painters and photographers. The first time the quarries were used in any way other than their intended purpose was in 1959 when Jean Cocteau used them as a backdrop for his film, “Le Testament d’Orphée.” (Segments of this film are shown in the current show.)
Although, perhaps, the beauty of the quarries was recognized much earlier as evidenced by the many sculptures and frescoes created by the quarry workers.
In 2008, the owners of the Carrières du Val d’Enfer sought new management for the quarries. Culturespaces, the company that was already managing the Chateau des Baux, was awarded the contract. They renamed the site from the Cathedral of Images to Carrières de Lumières and reopened in March 2012 to much popular and critical acclaim.
|Gianfranco Iannuzzi © G. Iannuzi|
When asked why people should come to see this show, Monsieur Iannuzzi reportedly replied, “it will be like dreaming with your eyes open.” What a great description of this unique show!
Carrières de Lumières is about 45 minutes from Lourmarin, the village where we hang our hats. Check out our website www.RentOurHomeInProvence.com for vacation homes to rent in this charming town.
When you go, do bundle up! As the title suggests, the quarries are a cool place to visit…in more ways than one.
Cost: €8; €14 joint ticket with Château des Baux
Hours: Apr.-Sept., daily 10-7; Oct.-Mar., daily 10-6