Famous French paintings in Shanghai show

20th Nov 2012

Shanghai's new modern art museum has teamed up with France's famous Musee d'Orsay to exhibit a major collection of 19th century paintings.

Works by artists including Gustave Courbet and Jean-Francois Millet are among the 87 paintings showcasing artists from the French Naturalism movement.

Most of the paintings, which are believed to have a collective value of around £150 million, will be on show in China for the first time.

The China Art Museum, which only opened in October, is expecting 3,000 visitors a day for the show, which runs until February.

Xavier Ray, a curator for the Musee d'Orsay's paintings department, said the subjects of the paintings have much in common with modern day China.

Paintings from the Naturalist period, particularly in the second half of the 19th century, focused on everyday life and the huge social and industrial upheaval of the time - something that is now happening across China.

One of the highlights of the show is The Gleaners, by Millet, which shows three women searching for wheat after the harvest.

The Millet, Courbet and French Naturalism exhibition will return to Paris for an October 2013 showing at the Musee d'Orsay.

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