The Centre Pompidou in Paris

home to one of the world's most important museums of modern art
The New Cultural Institution

Pompidou is named after the 1969 French President Georges Pompidou. He launched the idea of creating a new cultural institution in Paris dedicated to modern art. This new cultural center fascinated 650 admissions on its 1971 competition. Richard Rogers, Renzo Piano and Gianfranco Franchini submitted their architectural winning project. It was fascinating for it made practical elements such as escalators, air conditioning and water pipes to the outside of the building which resulted to a more spacious inner space for the exhibition of art works.

The construction of the glass and metal building located their neighbourhood ran into a lot of disagreement from people who disliked the idea of an ‘oil refinery’ in a historic district. But when the museum opened in December 1977, it became an instant success. Originally designed to accommodate some 5,000 visitors per day, the Centre Pompidou has been accepting over 25,000 visitors per day making it one of the most visited attractions in Paris.

The Centre Pompidou is home to one of the world’s most important museums of modern art. The Public Information Library or BPI holds a huge collection of books, magazines and a large number of new media items. The library occupies the first three floors of the building, while the museum’s permanent collection is located on the 4th and 5th floors. The first and top floors are used for large exhibitions. The museum has one of the most important collections of modern art. The 4th floor contains works from 1905 to 1965 and covers art movements such as fauvism, abstract art, surrealism and cubist art. Artists like Matisse, Kadinsky, Miró and Picasso are just some of the featured there. The 5th floor covers the period after 1965, including the pop-art movement and figurative art.

The well-known “Place Georges Pompidou” or “Place Beauborg” is located in front of the Centre Pompidou with large crowds that are energized by the presentation of mimes, street portraitists and other entertainers. Located in the right of the square of Centre Pompidou is the first modern fountain in Paris. The fountain has numerous dynamic statues which were designed by Niki de Saint Phalle and Jean Tinguely. This is another way of seeing some contemporary art without having to go inside the museum.

14 thoughts on “The Centre Pompidou in Paris”

  1. I have always known that Paris is one of the few cities or places in the whole wide world which is rich in art. True enough, Paris has one of the best museums which are home to the breathtaking masterpieces of some of the greatest artists of all time. For awhile I thought the Louvre was the only museum that is worth visiting in Paris, until I saw President Obama and his family visit a unique looking building in Paris last year.
    The unique or rather strange looking building turned out to be the Centre Pompidou. From the design of the building, I would never have guessed that it was actually a museum. The Centre Pompidou really stands out from the old buildings surrounding it. The architectural design screams modern art. I think it is such a unique approach of showcasing modern and even classic art pieces. When I saw pictures of this building, I was curious to know if the pipes where just part of the design or do they actually serve a purpose. Interestingly enough, it did serve a purpose: the blue pipes are for air, green pipes for water passage, red pipes for elevators, yellow pipes for electricity, gray pipes for the corridors, and the white pipes as supporting structure for the building itself.
    The great thing about the Centre Pompidou in Paris is that you get to appreciate art whether you are inside or outside the building. Inside the building, aside from the wide array of modern and classical art pieces, this building is also packed with a lot of other amenities such as a cinemas and dining areas on the second floor, a library on the third floor, and even boutiques on 4th and 6th floors. It truly is a perfect all in one destination which I know art lovers will truly appreciate. The Centre Pompidou in Paris is usually open all days of the week except on Tuesdays. They are open from 10 am all the way to 10 pm.

  2. What I absolutely adore about this edifice is that it just stands out from the conservative and traditional buildings surrounding it. Also, the idea of showing off the pipes instead of hiding them is extremely “naughty”. It definitely lives up to the fact that this building houses modern art!

  3. What is amazing with this structure is this is not only a typical museum, it also has a library which is a major part of this building. It also gives you an array of different kinds of modern collections, which differs from the other museums. In Centre Pompidou, you will have the entertainment you need inside and outside of the establishment.

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  7. Great blog, I am about to visit Paris and was hunting the Internet for some amazing places to visit in Paris other than Eiffel Tower (of course) and then I came across your blog. It is really informative and made me visit this place. Thank You!

  8. The Pompidou Centre is also famous for its public library which is fully stocked with almost 500,000 books as well as other media. It can easily accommodate 2,000 readers, too, and if you’re not a French speaker, you can even watch television shows from around the world.

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