Although the name of Signac is indelibly linked to Saint-Tropez, some people are unaware of the extent to which he was intrinsically at the origin of the artistic and patrimonial fortune of the Var town.
May 2022 is the 130th anniversary of the painter's arrival on board the Olympia in the port of Saint-Tropez. The Museum of Saint-Tropez, whose first configuration of Museon Tropelen, created in 1922, owes him so much, can only honour his memory with the temporary exhibition Signac and Saint-Tropez.
Thus, during the months of May and June, numerous events and activities will mark this important commemoration under the title: "In the wake of Signac".
This experienced sailor, accompanied by the woman who was to become his wife, left a very honourable impression on a certain day in May 1892, shortly before the Bravade, by the way he manoeuvred and docked. The inhabitants, who witnessed the scene, noted that they were not dealing with a beginner.
This remarkable arrival sealed more than 20 years of secondary vacation and of constantly renewed inspiration, giving rise to works that made Saint-Tropez legendary. The presence of Signac from 1892 onwards; undoubtedly attests to the beginning of a real artistic breeding ground, a sort of laboratory of the avant-garde, thus conferring on Saint-Tropez an artistic fame first, then literary, cinematographic, festive, and then increasingly touristy with a jet-set varnish which has not, however, totally undermined the authenticity of the peninsula.
Signac's personality, his hospitality, his influence on many painters who came to stay in Saint-Tropez, his role as a mentor for younger generations, all bear witness to the manifesto of a free thinker (anarchist tendency), very open to various modes of artistic expression... he immortalised the coastal landscapes of the gulf to some extent, conferring on them a kind of patrimonial immutability. He and his painter friends who made up the Saint-Tropez group from 1892 to 1914, left multiple testimonies of the peninsula and of the architecture of the houses on the quay, thus during the reconstruction after the bombardment of the port, it was impossible not to restore the facades to the identical.
This charismatic painter knew how to magnify the umbrella pines (including the famous Bertaud pine)... when you walk along the coastal path, for example, it's as if you were walking through a Signac painting! (the boats have changed somewhat in shape and number, however...). True premonitory and manifest sentences of the astonishment in which he finds himself on discovering Saint-Tropez: "Since yesterday I have been installed and I swim in joy (...) In front of the golden shores of the gulf, the blue waves dying on a small beach, my beach is a good anchorage for the Olympia (...) In the background, the blue silhouettes of the Maures and the Esterel - I have something to work on for my whole life, this is the happiness that I have just discovered..." (letter from PS to his mother, p. 3). ( letter from PS to his mother, mid-May 1892) These quotations, often repeated to understand the artist's link with the town, confirm that Signac, after Maupassant, is indeed the main discoverer of Saint-Tropez.
From 05/05 to 09/10/2022, daily.
Full price: from 6 €, Reduced price: from 3 €, Associate member: from 3 €, Teenager (12-18 years): from 3 €, Group adults: from 3 €.
Free: Icom, disabled people (+ accompanying person), jobseekers, press, museum friends (presentation of cards for all these categories)
Exhibition assembly/disassembly: single rate 3€.