Spiritual, living cathedral

A new museography for the treasury

During the 800th anniversary of the cathedral in 1963, the Treasury enjoyed a new museum, respecting the framework and the desired furniture in the nineteenth century by its directors, particularly Eugène-Emmanuel VIOLLET-LE-DUC.

On the occasion of the 850 th anniversary of the cathedral in 2013, it is in this respect and the scientific basis of the recent campaign of general inventory of art of the cathedral, a new museography, anchored in the 21st century, wants to restore clarity to the whole.

Choice of exhibits, signage, development and explanation of the historical dimension, trim, lighting, all compete to make intelligible to the public the meaning, function and artistic value of the pieces presented in respect of facilities desired by Viollet-le-Duc and, in this particular place, have absolute legitimacy.

Treasury. The word does not leave indifferent. Its mysterious side prevails, hanging, intriguing, seductive, fascinating. As more than two hundred fifty treasures of cathedrals, abbeys and churches of France open to the public, the Treasury of Notre-Dame de Paris is a privileged witness of Art and History, witness spiritual memory.

Gradually assembled from the origins of the cathedral, the treasury of Notre Dame is at the end of the 18th century one of the most prosperous in Europe. Destroyed during the Revolution, restored after the Concordat, it has benefited from the restoration of the great ceremonies, gifts of the Empire and the Restoration and badges inherit relics saved from the treasury of the Sainte-Chapelle. Again ransacked in the riots of 1830 and 1831, recreated in the middle of the 19th century in the writings and designs of Viollet-le-Duc, enriched ever since the treasury of Notre Dame today, which is rare, fully kept its original vocation: the conservation of precious objects assigned to the liturgy while maintaining their sacred character.

Each year, nearly 400,000 visitors flock there to capture this historic journey in sacred art and religious jewelry from the XIIIth to the XXIth century.

This proposed new museum was designed by the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris and the services of the Ministry of Culture - DRAC Ile-de-France. The design and construction were entrusted to the company Ainu with the assistance of Benoit Ferré, architect of the clergy affectataire.

Funded by the association Notre-Dame de Paris in 2013, with the support of the Cathedral Chapter and private sponsors, the work was carried out from January 9 to February 10, 2012.

For more information on the Treasury of Notre-Dame de Paris, click here.

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On the left, the 1963 museography. On the right, the new presentation
© NDP
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