Centre Pompidou has been visited by over 100 million people in 40 years thanks to its impressive collections of Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall and Henri Matisse paintings. Centre Pompidou was the brainchild of French President Georges Pompidou, a lover of modern art. Centre Pompidou's 1977 architecture by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers violently contrasts with the surrounding streets and houses of Le Marais, one of the oldest districts in the city. The top Paris museums.
Lesser known than the Louvre Museum and Musee d'Orsay, Le Centre Pompidou is well worth your time: central location in Le Marais district, a daring monument, first class modern art collections, stunning Paris views and a lively district.
Together with Picasso Museum, another world class museum of modern art at walking distance, Centre Pompidou greatly contributed to the fame of Le Marais, now the most fashionable district in the City of Lights.
Locate Centre Pompidou on Paris map.
Paris metro: Chatelet les Halles and Rambuteau stations. Open all days except Tuesdays and May 1st from 11am to 10pm (ticket office closed at 9 pm). Thursdays until 11pm.
The ticket (14 euros) is valid for the temporary exhibitions and the National Museum of Modern Art.
Centre Pompidou has 60 000 pieces of art, the second largest 20th century art collection in the world behind MOMA in New York City, USA. The collections are exhibited on a six month rotation basis. Picasso, Chagall, Matisse, Kandinsky, Léger are the best represented painters in the museum, which also stages first class temporary exhibitions.
To see more great modern and contemporary paintings in Paris, visit also the lesser known Musee art moderne.
Born in Spain, Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) spent most of his life in Paris and in the French Riviera in Southern France. For that reason, France has three world class Picasso Museums: Centre Pompidou, Picasso Museum Paris, Picasso Museum Antibes.
Centre Pompidou has a collection of 65 Picasso paintings spanning his entire life. A good complement to Paris Picasso Museum, near-by, dedicated to the artist.
Born in Russia, Marc Chagall (1887-1985) spent much of his long life in Paris and in the French Riviera. He became a french celebrity and an extremely popular painter.
Centre Pompidou has a collection of 59 Chagall paintings spanning his entire life. While in Paris, you can also admire the Chagall ceiling of XIXth century Opéra Garnier. We also recommend you to go to the French Riviera and visit the wonderful Chagall Museum Nice.
Henri Matisse (1869-1954) was a frenchman. As Picasso and Chagall, he started in Paris, emigrated to the USA when World War II broke out and came back to France after the war to settle in the French Riviera. Matisse is also an extremely popular painter.
Centre Pompidou has a large collection of Matisse paintings. You could also complement your visit of Centre Pompidou by flying to the great Matisse Museum Nice in the French Riviera.
Fernand Léger (1881-1955) was also a frenchman. As the three others, he first settled in Paris, emigrated to the USA and came back after the war to settle in the French Riviera.
Centre Pompidou has 35 Léger paintings. You could complement your visit to Centre Pompidou with a visit to the spectacular Léger Museum Biot in a lovely village in the French Riviera.
Jonglers and musicians animate the large lazza in front of Centre Pompidou. The whole district is very lively. You will find bars and music on rue des Lombards (Paris map) very close to Centre Pompidou. The large Les Halles Shopping Mall is 5' walking from Centre Pompidou.
On the top floor of Centre Pompidou, the expensive Georges restaurant has a great Paris view. It is possible to enjoy the view of the city from the escalator and top floor platform.
Centre Pompidou is the most spectacular 20th century monument in Paris. It was designed in 1977 by architects Renzo Piano from Italy and Richard Rodgers from the UK.
It all began with Georges Pompidou who wanted to construct a monumental cultural center in Paris that would attract all kinds of visitors. The president held an international competition for the project. Suprinsingly, the design of Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, both not famous at the time, won the competition.
They designed a high-tech modern cultural center unlike anything seen before, exposing all of the infrastructure of the building. The skeleton itself engulfs the building from its exterior, showing all of the different mechanical and structure systems not only so that they could be understood but also to maximize the interior space without interruptions.
Georges Pompidou was born in 1911 in a small village of France. He was Prime Minister of France from 1962 to 1968, the longest tenure in the position, and President of France from 1969 until his death in 1974. He had long been a top aide to president Charles de Gaulle. As president, he was a moderate conservative, repaired France's relationship with the United States and maintained positive relations with the former colonies in Africa. Georges Pompidou passionately loved modern art. He personnally took the decision to create what later became the Centre Pompidou.