Saturday, May 1, 2010

Countdown for the Centre Pompidou - Metz

Paris's museum of contemporary art, the Centre Pompidou, will open its first regional branch on May 12 in Metz. Signs--literally--of the museum's impending opening dot the city. Billboards everywhere have portraits of iconic modern artists--Picasso, Warhol, Dali--emblazoned with the slogan "I'm moving to Metz."

Through huge gallery windows high up in the building, I can see boxes full of paintings waiting to be hung. The museum's exterior remains under fervent construction. The newly planted trees are starting to show leaves, but the ground from which they rise remains uncovered dirt, and the light poles all still have protective wrapping. In the meantime, contemporary sculptures have been placed in many of Metz's public spaces. There's glowing obelisk in the Place St-Martin, around the corner from our apartment. Sculptures sprouted, such as this piece in a series called "Sprouts," in the park along the river. And many sculptures took up residence on the esplanade.

The city expects that the Centre Pompidou - Metz will significantly increase the number of tourists here. A restaurant server mentioned that the city is providing foreign language classes for workers in Metz who are likely to be interacting with people from other countries. Only 75 minutes from Paris by TGV, Metz will be a major destination for visitors in a new way for this ancient city.

No comments:

Post a Comment