The theme is original. Dared even. Dedicate an exhibition to the beer in the item For his first major exhibition for two years, the musée de la Chartreuse, Douai celebrates its past beer. With “To drink! When the beer calls at the museum”, the goal is to attract a different audience in the building, freshly restored, which welcomes an average of 25,000 visitors, including 20,000 school per year. “A theme for the unusual that comes to break the codes of the classical exhibition”, greet the mayor of Douai, Frédéric Chéreau. Until 15 September, the museum exhibits paintings, works of art, posters, and sculptures from the Sixteenth century to today around the popular drink. Many loans were made on the part of parisian museums of the Louvre, the Petit Palais and the musée d’orsay but also by the Rijkmuseum of Amsterdam. Only regret, the loan cannot be a Monet and a Picasso.

The art of advertising “Beer of the Meuse by Alfons Mucha. Beer museum-Department of the Meuse

The beer is primarily a matter of advertising. Under the arcades of the old convent of the Sixteenth century, the tour begins with advertising posters. “French, drink beer French”, says the slogan of a poster between the two world wars, on top of a cock flamboyant. True genius of the advertisement, Alfons Mucha is also exposed. Designed in 1897 by the Czech artist, poster “Beer of the Meuse” registered in the pure Art nouveau style of the designer. Under the woman with the ears, beer in hand, an allegory of the river Meuse overlooking the breweries of the region.

Do not look for the indication “to be consumed with moderation”. Until the second half of the Twentieth, all means are good to promote the product brewed. It is fun to watch these two women nursing their children, with the title: “beer is nourishing” or even that poster of the end of the Nineteenth century of Mr. and Mrs. Toujourssoif where “each day, emptying twelve pots, John Toujourssoif is cheerful, refreshed and a overweight respectable”.

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“beer is more honored in the protestant countries”

Marie-Paule Botte, curator of the exhibition

After the posters, paintings and objects of art Among the paintings presented in a room with the colors barley, “we find the representation of the beer, especially in the still lifes,” explains Marie-Paule Botte, an art historian and curator of the exhibition. Many paintings from the flemish school or netherlands. Anything but a coincidence. “The wine has always been defended by the catholic Church. The beer is reserved for the secular life so that the wine is dedicated to the spiritual life. Conversely, the beer is more honored in the protestant countries”, noted the commissioner.

Nature morte in the beer glass by Jan Van Velde. Frans Pegt

Amber, red, brunette or blonde, the beer is to be found represented in the scenes of popular life, bars, coffee shops and villages. But also in portraits where the consumption of tobacco is often associated with them. “There is discrimination in the art of the table, adds Marie-Paule Botte. Of the Dutch paintings show the opposition with the bourgeois, a glass of wine in hand and on the other, the waitress with a glass of beer.” But the beer has the right to the most beautiful containers.

The museum of the Chartreuse and gathered a very nice collection of mugs, cans and other pitchers of great finesse, some dating from the Sixteenth century. Works of the contemporary artist, Ben finish complete the table. The american Karen Eland, on commission from the museum, offers reproductions of advertising famous made with beer as the medium.

32 feet of hops in the gardens of the museum

major Challenge for the museum, attracting school children and families without the promotion of an alcoholic beverage. Loi Évin law. Various animations will be proposed during the six months of exhibition, such as workshops of plastic arts, concerts or games trail to discover the heritage of the region by sets of observations. A super-hero of the beer has even been created for the occasion: Super-Malt and its mask in the shape of an ear of grain was to guide the children along the exhibition. In tribute to the heritage of brewing in the city, 32 feet of hops are also planted in the gardens of the museum. For the adults, tasting workshops are planned, and, the icing on the cake, a beer has been specially brewed for the exhibition. “Fun” was performed by the students of the agricultural school Wagnonville, and will not be produced that the time of exposure.