The Tuileries in ruins

The Tuileries in ruins


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  • View of the torched Tuileries with the Carrousel arch

    TEN CATE Siebe Johannes (1858 - 1908)

  • The Tuileries Palace after the 1871 fire, seen from the Carrousel garden.

    TEN CATE Siebe Johannes (1858 - 1908)

To close

Title: View of the torched Tuileries with the Carrousel arch

Author : TEN CATE Siebe Johannes (1858 - 1908)

Creation date : 1880

Date shown: 1871

Dimensions: Height 26.5 - Width 65

Technique and other indications: oil painting on wood

Storage place: Louvre Museum (Paris) website

Contact copyright: © Photo RMN-Grand Palais - G. Blot

Picture reference: 10-514680 / RF 1988-21

View of the torched Tuileries with the Carrousel arch

© Photo RMN-Grand Palais - G. Blot

To close

Title: The Tuileries Palace after the 1871 fire, seen from the Carrousel garden.

Author : TEN CATE Siebe Johannes (1858 - 1908)

Creation date : 1880

Date shown: 1871

Dimensions: Height 26.5 - Width 65

Technique and other indications: oil painting on wood

Storage place: Louvre Museum (Paris) website

Contact copyright: © Photo RMN-Grand Palais - G. Blot

Picture reference: 89EE2182 / RF 1988-20

The Tuileries Palace after the 1871 fire, seen from the Carrousel garden.

© Photo RMN-Grand Palais - G. Blot

Publication date: March 2016

Historical context

The ruins of the burnt buildings

Three burnt buildings mainly offered Parisians returning to the capital at the beginning of June 1871 the spectacle of impressive destruction: the Town Hall, the Court of Auditors and the Tuileries Palace.

Designers, engravers, painters and photographers quickly wanted to fix these vast fields of ruins planted in the heart of Paris. The decision to rebuild the Town Hall burnt down on May 24, 1871 was taken in April 1873, as part of a general law on the reconstruction of buildings destroyed under the Commune: the new building was built from 1873 to 1883.

Image Analysis

The permanence of the ruins

Neither the ruins of the Court of Auditors burnt down on May 23, 1871 nor those of the Tuileries Palace ravaged by fire, from May 23 to 26, were affected by the law of 1873 on the reconstruction of buildings destroyed under the Commune.

The remains of the Court of Auditors thus survived for almost thirty years, before being demolished during the construction of Orsay station. The place had become a place to walk for Parisians.

On the other hand, the ruins of the Tuileries - a symbol of the monarchy - sparked debate, in 1876 and again in 1882, on the advisability of razing or maintaining them. In December 1882, the Chamber of Deputies finally voted for their destruction. These ruins were acquired by a demolition contractor, Achille Picard, who until 1884 organized a trade in stones, remains and facade fragments.

In these two works, the cantor of the Parisian rains and mists that is Siebe Ten Cate (1858-1908) represents the ruins of the Tuileries at a time when their dismantling is already well advanced and after the debates which shook the political class: some were supporters of an educational maintenance of the old palace, to bear witness to the destruction of the Municipality, others proposed their restoration, such as the architects Viollet-le-Duc, Garnier and Lefuel. The supporters of the disappearance of the ruins finally won.

The views of the destroyed palace given by Ten Cate are not or no longer concerned with these political questions. The painter is seduced here by the poetics of the ruins permanently inscribed in the Parisian landscape. The morning light reflected in the water of the View of the Tuileries from the garden and the conflagration of the facade by the setting sun in the View of the Tuileries from the Carrousel side make these works into pure Parisian landscapes and show that these ruins have changed their motive: their political and polemical meaning has disappeared or faded in favor of a poetic approach.

Interpretation

An archeology-fiction

Like the views made by Giuseppe de Nittis (1846-1884) in 1875 (The Place des Pyramides, Paris, Musée d´Orsay) and in 1882 (The Place du Carrousel, Paris, Musée d'Orsay), the urban landscapes of Siebe Ten Cate representing the Tuileries - altered by light, fog or snow in other of his works in the Musée Carnavalet (Paris) or at the Musée de La Réunion - testify to a romantic vision of the capital in ruins.

Echoing the Siege tables by Théophile Gautier (1871), the painter also displays his fascination with the architectural vestiges of the modern city, projected in a few terrible days to the rank of immemorial ancient cities patiently corroded by time.

  • Municipality of Paris
  • fire
  • Paris
  • ruins
  • Bloody week
  • Tuileries
  • vandalism
  • Tuileries Palace

Bibliography

Jean-Marie BRUSON, "Iconography of the Tuileries castle after the fire", Historical monuments, no 177, 1991, p. 33-37.

Bernard NOËL, Municipality dictionary, 2 vol., Paris, Flammarion, coll. "Champs", 1978.

To cite this article

Bertrand TILLIER, "The Tuileries in ruins"


Video: In Search of André Le Nôtre, Designer of the Tuileries Garden


Comments:

  1. Hapu

    the phrase Magnificent and it is timely

  2. Yahyah

    I hope, you will come to the correct decision.

  3. Crespin

    Agree, a very good piece

  4. Arashijar

    Granted, very good information



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