In Padua – the extraordinary works of modern French painters, from Monet to Matisse

What happened in the art world in Paris in the hundred years from 1850 to 1950? This is the story of the exhibition “From MONET to MATISSE. French Moderns, 1850-1950”, on display in the halls of Palazzo Zabarella, in Padua from 16 December 2023 to 12 May 2024.

A journey through time in France, the centre of international modernism

Visitors are immersed in the masterpieces of painting and sculpture by 45 artists, including Cézanne, Degas, Tanguy, Rodin and Courbet. There are 59 works in all, and they come from the extraordinary European collection of the Brooklyn Museum. The Padua exhibition, curated by Lisa Small and Richard Aste, is art telling its own story in the century in which artists moved away from the academic artistic tradition to focus on subjects from everyday life.

The selected works represent the avant-garde movements that defined modern art and the key moments of the period – realism, impressionism, post-impressionism, symbolism, fauvism, cubism and surrealism – that emerged in Paris during the hundred years represented in the exhibition.


Explore the four worlds of Landscape, Still Life, Nudes, and Portraits and Figures

The exhibition “From MONET to MATISSE. French Moderns, 1850–1950” is divided into four sections: still life, landscape, nudes, portraits and figures.

Still life

From 1850 onwards, still life regained popularity thanks to the addition of objects such as rich fabrics, ripe fruit, sunlit views and exotic objects. The new role of these subjects is to induce sensations beyond the physical experience, as happens for instance in Matisse’s Fauvist work “Flowers”.


When artists began to paint “en plein air”, nature was portrayed in its magic of colours and shades, as in “Rising Tide at Pourville” by Monet, where the rainbow hues convey to the viewer the natural conditions at that moment.


In the 20th century, the modern nude also reflects the changing perspectives of abstraction, as in Rodin’s work “The Age of Bronze“.

Portraits and figures

Artists began to portray fashionably dressed urbanites, rendered in bold colours and textured surfaces. This can be seen, for example, in “The Musician” by Chagall.



The exhibition, open until 24 May 2024, is an unmissable opportunity to get to know the main protagonists of the period represented and above all to enjoy their extraordinary works. 

To visit the exhibition, you can book your next trip to Padua and your stay at the Hotel Tritone at the same time, by writing here or calling (+39) 049 8668099