The Louvre hosts the François I and Dutch Art exhibition until 15 January 2018, casting new light on a little-known aspect of the French Renaissance with an exhibition that reveals its many and varied facets, its extravagances and its monumental character.
Although the appetite of François I for Italian art is well known and his patronage is essentially identified with the creation of the Italian-influenced second School of Fontainebleau, his reign was equally notable for the well-established tradition of Dutch artists settling in France.
The best known of these Northern artists active in France during his reign - Jean Clouet and Corneille de La Haye known as Corneille de Lyon - were primarily portraitists. This wave of Northern influences (from Antwerp, Brussels, Leiden and Haarlem) swept through not only Paris, but also Normandy, Picardy, Champagne and Burgundy chiefly in the form of illuminated manuscripts and religious imagery. Recent research has gradually revealed a number of painters unjustly consigned to oblivion: Godefroy le Batave, Noel Bellemare, Grégoire Guérard and Bartholomeus Pons are just some of those artists who excelled in media as diverse as illumination, painting, stained glass, tapestry and sculpture. The king is known to have bought many such tapestries, pieces by goldsmiths and silversmiths, and Flemish paintings.
Musée du Louvre
Rue de Rivoli