Museums of Metz
Musées de la Cour d’Or
This museum is situated up the rue des jardins and contains a vast array of Gallo-Roman sculptures with additional collections from medieval and Renaissance periods. This and the adjacent art museum are built next to remains of old Roman baths, which to be the most interesting site there.
Museums of Nancy
Musée des Beaux-Arts is situated on the corner of the Rue Stanislas and has a superb collection of French 19th and 20th century art, including work from Victor Prouvé, Manet, Matisse and Picasso. The basement houses a collection of works from Nancy’s glass company, Daum. There is also a Musée Aquarium de Nancy with a vast collection of stuffed animals and birds and a large aquarium of tropical fish downstairs. The Musée Historique Lorraine is dedicated to the history and heritage of Lorraine and contains a superb collection of etchings from the Nancy-born, Jacques Callot, archaeological finds, sculptures and paintings. In the adjacent building is the Musée des Cordeliers or the Musée Régional des Arts et Traditions populaires. Housed in the Church of Cordeliers and the Ducale Chapel, this museum illustrates past rural life and has a superb display of costumes, furniture and crafts. The Musée de l’Ecole de Nancy is housed in the villa built for the Corbin family who were the founders of the Magasins Réunis chain of department stores. The artwork, furniture, fabrics and jewellery in addition to glassware from Emile Gallé are displayed in the opulent setting of the family home and the outside gardens are just lovely and full of colour.
Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Musée des Beaux-Arts and Musée Archéologique are all situated within the stunning and rather grand, Palais de Rohan. The Museum of Decorative Art is probably the most interesting with extravagant state apartments and superb ceramic collection and faïence tiles. The Museum of Fine Arts has a lovely collection of European art and the specialist Archaeology Museum house some of the most important finds in France, dating back to 600 B.C.
The Musée de l’Ouvre Notre Dame is situated adjacent to the Palais Rohan in the mansion inhabited by the cathedral architects. Exhibits include glasswork, sculptures, original parchment drawings and the 11th century Wissembourg Christ, all taken from the original Romanesque cathedral of Notre Dame. The Musée Historique is located on the Place de la Grande Boucherie in the Old Slaughterhouse (1588). It illustrates the history and progression of the city through paintings, drawings, etchings and military objects. Reopening is planned for 2006. The Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain is the Museum of Modern and Contemporary art. It is situated on the Place Hans-Jean Arp. Not only is the building full of fantastic works and collections of many themes from popular and less known artists, the architecture is quite something. The modern glass fronted building overlooks the river and the Vauban’s dam.