Destination: Paris
Top Ten
1 Centre Georges Pompidou
2 Les Champs-Elysées
3 La Grande Arche de la Défense
4 Les Invalides
5 Le Louvre
6 Notre-Dame
7 Orsay, Musée d'
8 Les Quais
9 La Tour Eiffel
10 La Villette

Musée Du Louvre
1 Centre Georges Pompidou

This controversial modern art centre, which recently celebrated its 20th birthday, houses under one roof all forms of contemporary art.

With 25,000 visitors a day, the Centre Georges Pompidou is now one of Paris's top sights. Yet at the time it was built, close to the historic Marais which is famous for its elegant architecture, the 'refinery', as Rogers' and Piano's post-modern building was nicknamed, deeply shocked French people. In fact, the revolutionary concept of this open-plan 'house of culture for all' ensured its success and brought life back to the district. The centre has had a major face-lift and was completely refurbished inside for reopening in January 2000; its main asset, the Musée National d'Art Moderne, reached by the external escalator, gained extra exhibition space in the process. The museum is dedicated to the main trends of 20th-century art from 1905 to the present day. Particularly well represented are Fauvism (Dufy, Derain, Matisse), Cubism (Braque, Picasso, Léger), Dadaism, Surrealism (Dali, Miró), Expressionism (Soutine, Kirchner, Modigliani and to a lesser extent Chagall), various forms of abstract art (Kandinsky, Klee, but also Poliakoff, Dubuffet and the Cobra movement), and pre-1960 American painting. The collections of contemporary art include exponents of the new realism (Arman, César) and of Pop Art (Warhol).

The centre also houses a public information library, the Institute for Acoustic and Musical Research, the Centre for Industrial Creation, a large exhibition hall, a children's workshop and a reconstruction of Brancusi's workshop.

Address: Place Georges-Pompidou, 75004 Paris; (
Phone: 01 44 78 12 33
Open: Modern art museum and exhibitions: 11-9. Closed Tue. Library: weekdays 12-10; weekends 10-10.
Restaurant: Cafeteria (Inexpensive) with good view on 5th floor
Bus: 29 38 47 58
Metro: Rambuteau, Hôtel de Ville
Accessible: Good
Admission: Free access; museum: moderate
Practical: Guided tours, shops
French Riviera
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