February 14, 2010 - Centre Pompidou-Metz - Masterpieces?: Opening exhibition
February 14, 2010

Masterpieces?: Opening exhibition

Centre Pompidou-Metz construction site at night, January 2010
©Shigeru Ban Architects Europe & Jean de Gastines / Metz Métropole / Centre Pompidou-Metz
Photo Olivier H. Dancy

Opening of the
Centre Pompidou-Metz

12 May 2010

Opening exhibition at the
Centre Pompidou-Metz

Chapter 1
12 May – 25 October 2010


Free of charge until Sunday, May 16, visitors can come and discover the opening exhibition entitled Masterpieces? and admire the building’s spectacular architecture, the work of Shigeru Ban and Jean de Gastines.

Numerous events and concerts are scheduled for this long weekend with the climax being La Nuit des Musées on Saturday, May 15 when the Centre Pompidou-Metz stays open all night.

The opening of the Centre Pompidou-Metz is a vast celebration. It not only pays tribute to the tradition and history of the Centre Pompidou in Paris, it continues to perpetuate the Centre’s spirit.

Opening exhibition at the Centre Pompidou-Metz

Chapter 1
12 May – 25 October 2010

What exactly is a masterpiece today? Is this still a relevant concept? Who decides what is a masterpiece and what isn’t? Once a masterpiece, always a masterpiece?

The opening exhibition Masterpieces? offers a display of over 800 remarkable works filling the more than 5000 sq m. of gallery space at the Centre Pompidou-Metz. The exhibition questions the idea of the masterpiece, its history and its modern interpretation. As the biggest loan of works ever made by the Centre Pompidou, Masterpieces? illustrates the riches of the collection held by the Musée National d’Art Moderne. The Centre Pompidou-Metz invites the public to discover, or rediscover, major works such as Calder’s Josephine Baker IV, Klein’s Grande Anthropophagie Bleue or Picasso’s Woman with Red Head.

Contemporary art is highlighted by specially commissioned works, while prestigious French and international establishments are hailing the opening of the Centre Pompidou-Metz by lending key works from their collections.

Masterpieces? constitutes an unprecedented selection in which every field of artistic creation is represented: painting, sculpture, installation, graphic art, photography, video, sound art, film, architecture, design, etc. Visitors progress through the exhibition’s four “chapters” each inside one of the four exhibition spaces: the Grande Nef (Great Nave), Galleries 1, 2 and 3.

The exhibition addresses an informed audience and members of the general public alike in a display that presents remarkable works in a new light, allowing visitors to encounter or reencounter major works of art.

The Centre Pompidou-Metz in brief

The Centre Pompidou-Metz is the first offshoot of a major French cultural institution – the Centre Pompidou in Paris, and was established in collaboration with regional authorities.

As a sister institution to the Centre Pompidou, the Centre Pompidou-Metz is entirely independent in its scientific and cultural choices. Its programming is in harmony with the innovative, cross-disciplinary and public outreach approach of the Centre Pompidou and is based on its expertise, networks and reputation.

The new institution is aided in its pursuit of these values by the unique possibility to draw on the Centre Pompidou’s collection which, with over 65,000 works, is Europe’s largest collection of modern and contemporary art.

The building, by architects Shigeru Ban and Jean de Gastines, opens up to vast, modular exhibition spaces with imposing dimensions that can accommodate very tall pieces as well as large installations. It also incorporates a studio for live performances, a resource centre, reception areas, a gift and bookshop, a restaurant and a café.

The Centre Pompidou-Metz is intended as a unique experience; a place for visitors to engage with artistic creation in all its forms. It is a living venue with events scheduled throughout the year. It is an exceptional place, thanks to the architectural design of Shigeru Ban and Jean de Gastines, and a generous place as the entire project revolves around its public. Lastly, it is a place of excellence with its innovative, cross-disciplinary programming of world-class temporary exhibitions.

Centre Pompidou-Metz
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