The Musée du Montparnasse – a museum known for celebrating the art historical richness of the Parisian area of Montparnasse has been shut by the City of Paris, Le quotidien de l’art reports.
The museum was established in 1996 by Roger Pic, a local photographer who led a campaign against a real estate development planned for the site, the Musée du Montparnasse hosted temporary exhibitions and served as a cultural centre for the district of Montparnasse.
The 4,600-square-foot building is located in the 21 Avenue de Maine, in Paris’s 15th arrondissement, and is currently owned by the City of Paris. The building was once the atelier of the Russian artist Marie Vassilieff, who worked there from 1912. It subsequently became an affordable canteen where artists who had studios in the area would gather. This including most natably the likes of Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Georges Braque, Amedeo Modigliani, and Chaïm Soutine.
By 1913, Vassilieff’s canteen was so widely known that painter, sculptor, and filmmaker, Fernand Léger, gave two lectures there on the topic of Modern art.
In fact the Musée du Montparnasse has been targeted by the authorities in the past. It was previously forced to close its doors in September 2013, following an audit ordered by the local government.
Despite having been deemed “a location emblematic of the artistic history of Paris,” by the City of Paris upon its launch, the audit went on to claim that the Musée du Montparnasse’s lack of permanent collection constituted grounds to revoke the original agreement.
QdA reports that the building will be taken over by an art and research organisation called Bétonsalon, currently located in the 13th arrondissement.