The Parisian Hôtel Particulier in Drawings

Starting October 18th, the Tchoban Foundation will be showing 65 art works of Hôtel particulier buildings – prestigious town houses, which were built in the first part of the 18th century and characterize Parisian architecture until today - in the exhibition “Lʼhôtel particulier à Paris.” After Sergei Tchoban, architect and founder of the Tchoban Foundation for Architectural Drawing, showed his collection of 24 drawings at the École des Beaux-Arts in 2011 with the exhibition “À la source de l’ Antique. La collection de Sergei Tchoban”, the two institutions now continue their collaboration, this time with a selection of works from Paris that will be displayed in Berlin.

The displayed hand-drawn views, cross sections and floor plans are part of the large collection of École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, which is internationally acclaimed both for its singular monumental architecture as well as for the standard it sets in education. 

Jean-Michel Chevotet. Hôtel Chanac de Pompadour, today the Swiss Embassy. Elevation of the garden façade. Pen, black ink and Indian ink wash, blue and yellow green watercolour, 178 x 302 mm. Image © bpk – Bildagentur für Kunst, Kultur und Geschichte

The École’s collection is a treasure-trove of hand-drawn works, only rivaled in quantity and quality by the Louvre. The exquisite works on paper span a range from the Renaissance until today, presenting masters such as Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Rubens, Poussin and Bucher side by side. 

Pierre-Charles Prévotel. Hôtel de Belle-Isle. Elevation of the courtyard façade of one of the wings, section of the main building and elevation of the side wing which leads to the terrace. 1721. Pen and black ink with Indian ink wash, blue, orange yellow and pink water colour, 202 x 623 mm. Image © bpk – Bildagentur für Kunst, Kultur und Geschichte

The exhibited drawings are designs for L’Architecture françoise’s printing plates. The three volumes, published between 1727 and 1732 by Jean Mariette, were intended to impress all of Europe with France’s architectural excellence. Renowned Parisian businessman and publisher Jean Mariette commissioned young architects Jean Michel Chevotet and Pierre-Charles Prevotel to depict the buildings from various points of view. The drawings were executed to a precise and detailed standard, the better to convincingly depict the spirit, daring construction and decoration of each building. 

The town houses were built by the greatest architects of their time, Germain Boffrand and Jules Hardouin-Marsart in particular. The French nobility enlisted them for their dwellings that were primarily built in the 7th Arrondissement. Today, mostly ministries and embassies reside in these grand buildings. 

Anonymous. Hôtel Peyrenc de Moras, today the Rodin Museum. Elevation of the courtyard façade. Pen, black ink and Indian ink wash, blue watercolour, 215 x 368 mm. Image © bpk – Bildagentur für Kunst, Kultur und Geschichte

The exhibition is curated by Emmanuelle Brugerolles, Chief Curator of Drawings Department at the École des Beaux-Arts, and will remain open through February 15, 2015. A catalogue will accompany the exhibition with contributions by Emmanuelle Brugerolles as well as Alexandre Gady, architectural historian and professor at the Sorbonne University in Paris.

You can learn more about the exhibition here.

Announcement provided by the Tchoban Foundation Museum for Architectural Drawing.

About this author
Cite: Karissa Rosenfield. "The Parisian Hôtel Particulier in Drawings" 29 Sep 2014. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

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