The Musée du Dessin et de l’Estampe originale is the only French museum devoted to printed works. The museum lies across the historic buildings of the Arsenal. The rooms of la Poudrière (1742), the Hall of the Pillar (1680), the guardhouse (1741) and the bread oven’ bunker (1528). The Musée du Dessin et de l’Estampe originale maintains an important collection of graphic works, nearly 21,000 works, mostly engravings, covering the period from the 15th century to the present day.
The collections include major artworks such as the Apocalypse of Dürer, the engraved work of Eugène Leroy, engravings by Goya or Picasso, an important contemporary collection……
However, as light is a very common cause of damage to collections, at the Museum,we aim to safeguard artworks for the future, consequently, artworks cannot be continuously exposed, and are presented in rotation. Collections exhibition, known (im) as permanent, is renewed three times a year. Through this continuous artwork shifts, the museum constantly highlights the richness of its collections. The (im)permanent exhibition is presented in two forms, either an instructional exhibition with the print historical background and printing processes (with tools, presses and matrices in view of artworks), or an exhibition folder highlighting a particular point in the collection around an artist or subject.
Temporary exhibitions participate in demonstrating the particularity and diversity in practice of printing, its dynamism and its timeliness. Thematic or monographic, prints present any work of art made in multiple iterations. Raising awareness on practice, engraving workshops, the very extensive library made accessible to the public, the artists’ residences, Museum store offers gifts based on works of art, such as Museum publications, are the undertaken actions : catalogues and original prints, high quality collection, make this museum a recognized reference.