As the capital of history, art, and beauty, Paris remained one of the most popular art destinations on the planet in 2023. The city is stronger than ever with new fair organizations and investments. Travelers visiting the city in the final months of the year can expect a retrospective of Paris with a broad range of exhibitions that last into early 2024.

The culture and arts scene in Paris has been busy this year with a string of new venues and exhibitions that have transformed Paris into an art destination. Avenue Matignon, just north of the Seine, and Le Marais, once considered a boutique, have become the new home of international galleries. The undoubted star of 2023 was none other than François Pinault’s ingenious Bourse de Commerce. The space for art has prepared a breathtaking program for 2024 and also paved the way for other Parisian art initiatives to rethink their communication strategies.

Fondation Cartier is preparing to relocate to a larger venue in the Louvre des Antiquaires next year. Center Pompidou also offers a great selection as it prepares to close for a major renovation project that will last from 2025 to 2030.

This wave of energy that spread across the city was triggered by Paris+ Art Basel held at the Grand Palais Éphémère between 20 and 22 October 2023. Paris+ Art Basel might be over, but there are still many other art events in Paris before the new year.

Modern Paris: 1905-1925

Petit Palais, open until April 14, 2024

Launched by Petit Palais in 2014, the Paris Trilogy is an ongoing project that traces the city’s cultural heritage that has influenced the world, and Modern Paris is the latest installment in the series. The first leg of the trilogy was 2014’s Paris 1900, City of Entertainment. It paid homage to the World Exposition, which turned Paris into the symbol of luxury life for the rest of the world. 2019’s Romantic Paris: 1815-1858 was a revival of the Romantic Period, which lasted from the fall of Napoleon in 1815 until the February Revolution in 1848. Modern Paris reveals the city’s close bond with art during and after the First World War. Approximately 400 works by names such as Marcel Duchamp, Tamara de Lempicka, Modigliani, and Picasso are on exhibition.

Imagine Paris in the early 1900s. Exhibitions of great painters were being held annually in the Grand Palais. The great fashion designer Paul Poiret had moved to a stunning mansion on Avenue d’Antin in 1909, and Picasso’s “The Girls from Avignon” was exhibited here for the first time in 1916. In fact, Picasso lived just up the road with his wife, Olga (the exhibition also offers insight into life in the Picasso house). People rushed to the exhibitions at the Petit Palais to see the works of art smuggled during the war one last time. In the same hall in 1925, they witnessed the birth of Art Deco at the International Exhibition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts. 1925 was also the year Josephine Baker became a cabaret sensation. Modern Paris glorifies the roles played by women during the war and sheds light on a period when women gained more independence in the 1920s, starting by saying adieu to their corsets.

As a comprehensive overview of the unique and exciting history of this cosmopolitan capital, Modern Paris uses chronologically ordered exhibitions and installations to create an elegant tribute to the people and events that laid the foundations of modern Paris.

Amadeo Modigliani: A Painter and His Dealer

Musée de l’Orangerie, open until January 15, 2024

Amadeo Modigliani arrived in Paris as a painter in 1906 and quickly acquired a circle of friends like art dealer Paul Guillaume, who helped him in his artistic career during his time in the city. Believed to have been introduced by the poet Max Jacob, the duo shared a passion for literature and poetry and an admiration of African art. Guillaume helped the painter gain fame in the literary and art scene of Paris and built himself a career in art dealing.

They worked together from when they met in 1914 until Modigliani’s death in 1920. The creative output of the artist and much more are curated for the exhibition Amadeo Modigliani: A Painter and His Dealer at the Musée de l’Orangerie. More than one hundred paintings, fifty drawings, and dozens of sculptures handled by the young art dealer Paul Guillaume will be displayed.

Mark Rothko

Fondation Louis Vuitton, open until April 2, 2024

This is your invitation to the first Mark Rothko retrospective held in France since 1999. Rothko is known for his strong interaction with his audience through color. Now, 115 of his most iconic works are on exhibition at the Fondation Louis Vuitton. The exhibition includes New York subway scenes from the 1930s and the beginning of his abstract expressionist period in 1946.

One of the most famous stories about Rothko concerns a series of murals he was commissioned to do for the Philip Johnson-designed Four Seasons restaurant in the Seagram building in New York in 1958. For reasons unknown, Rothko never delivered the murals, and 11 years later, in 1969, he donated their updated versions to the Tate Gallery. Visitors will have the chance to see these famous paintings in the retrospective, as well as Rothko’s last unfinished red painting.

Van Gogh in Auvers-sur-Oise: The Final Months

Orsay Museum, open until February 4, 2024

Despite being one of the best painters in the world, Van Gogh had problems coping with the tragedies of life and chose to express his turbulent feelings on canvas. This exhibition focuses on the last two months of the artist’s life and offers amazing insight into the extremes of his creative intelligence. Van Gogh was able to rediscover himself and created masterpieces again after moving to the town of Auvers-sur-Oise near Paris. Orsay’s new exhibition brings together acclaimed paintings such as The Church at Auvers, the Portrait of Adeline Ravoux, and Blooming Chestnut Branches, all dated 1890, from various collections.

Mythologies americaines

Bourse de Commerce, open until January 22, 2024

Dedicating the 2023-24 winter season to a series of exhibitions titled American Mythologies with a selection supported by the Pinault Collection, Bourse de Commerce brings together different generations of modern American art with works that shed light on post-war life. American visual concept artist Lee Lozano’s Strike takes us to the 1960s. The highly unconventional yet equally inspiring late 20th-century artist Mike Kelley reveals the pop aesthetics of the 1970s with Ghost and Spirit. Artist, writer, publisher, academic, and critic Mira Schor’s Moon Room exhibition from the 1980s is a display of her contributions to feminist art. Inspired by Alejandro Amenábar’s film The Others, Ser Sarpas makes reference to the unconventional art movements of the 2010-2020s with the I Fear exhibition.

Chagall, Paris-New York

Hall des Lumières

Named after the cities that played a big part in the artist’s life, the exhibition delves into Chagall’s life, the period he lived in, his art, his artistic dilemmas, and much more.

The young Russian artist settled in his beloved Paris in the 1910s and never gave up on reflecting the city’s dynamism in his experimental work for years to come. Augmented with digital manipulations specifically for the exhibition, Chagall’s work reflects Russian culture, the Bible, fables, opera, and many other cultural references. Despite coinciding with the turbulent state of affairs in the early 20th century, this digital journey into the artist’s life is extremely intriguing.

Henry Taylor: From Sugar to Shit

Hauser & Wirth, open until January 7, 2024

Established in many European cities, the Swiss modern and contemporary art gallery Hauser & Wirth dedicates its first exhibition in Paris to contemporary artist Henry Taylor. From Sugar to Shit is a multifaceted narrative in which Taylor focuses on the human act of establishing relations through his works full of references to history and pop culture. Working in Paris throughout 2023 for the exhibition, no one can dispute the Parisian DNA in Taylor. Making the Orsay Museum his second home, Taylor has clearly found plenty of inspiration in French culture, history, and artists.

While in Paris:

  • Visit the Festival de l’Automne held in November for a program focused on visual arts, music, cinema, and theater.
  • Small galleries and artists across the city open their doors to visitors for workshops, courses, and special sales throughout December. The Open House event by Seiziem’Art collective in the 16th District is one of them.
  • More than 120 artifacts rescued from the fire-damaged Notre Dame Cathedral can be seen in The Treasure of Notre Dame Cathedral exhibition at the Louvre Museum until January 29, 2024.