The Comité Colbert is an association of 78 luxury brands and 14 cultural institutions to promote the concept of luxury and the French art de vivre. The group was founded in 1954 and named for Jean-Baptiste Colbert, the politician who introduced economic reform under the rule of King Louis XIV and was a significant patron of literature and the arts.
On October 27, the new museum building for the Fondation Louis Vuitton will open in the Bois de Boulogne in Paris. It was designed by the Los Angeles-based starchitect Frank Gehry with the patronage of the French businessman Bernard Arnault.
In Boulogne-Billancourt, a western suburb of Paris, an island in the Seine is being developed into an “artistic micro-city” designed by Jean Nouvel. The project for Île Seguin will create artists’ studios, commercial gallery and auction spaces, an exhibition hall, and a conference center to transform the island into a modern cultural hub.
This summer, André Le Nôtre’s 17th-century Water Theater grove at Versailles has been restored by the landscape designer Louis Benech with contemporary sculptures by Jean-Michel Othoniel – the first new permanent artworks added the garden in over 300 years.
Last week in London, a Monet water lily painting sold for $54 million in Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale. The work, a 1906 Nymphéas, is one of a series completed from 1905 to 1907 at Giverny.
The Gabriel Staircase, at the entrance to the Grand Apartments at the Château de Versailles, was designed by Ange-Jacques Gabriel in 1772 after the Petit Trianon and the Royal Opera at the palace. Completion of the staircase was delayed from the Revolution – until 1985 – and the monumental space gained a contemporary focal point in 2013.