Hauteville House, portrait of Victor Hugo’s beloved home
In a few days now, Hauteville House Victor Hugo’s refuge house when he was in exile in Guernsey after Louis Napoleon Bonaparte’s coup d’ état, will reopen its doors to the general public after months of renovation. The Paris City Hall, owner of the premises, has launched a series of renovations and obtained significant unexpected support from François Pinault.
The only property of Victor Hugo, the house dominates the bay of Havenet on the heights of Saint-Peter Port. The writer had had a footbridge built on the roof to continue writing to and from his beloved homeland.
To accompany this immense project, the Victor Hugo House, located on the beautiful Place des Vosges in the heart of the marsh, offers a route to help us understand and understand the importance of this place in Victor Hugo’s life. Because, in addition to being a refuge, Victor Hugo also invested it as he wrote, and each room, each object punctuates and rhythms the visit in the manner of a sonnet. Hauteville House is one of its most beautiful artistic creations that it is imperative to know to understand the spirit of its author and owner.
The exhibition retraces the writer’s life in exile through engravings, family photographs, quotations, but also furniture that Victor Hugo himself bought, “depicted” and traced in his own way.
The last room of the exhibition is dedicated to the white cards that have been given to some photographers. They had the privilege of tracing, each with their own universe, the atmosphere and a certain representation of life in this beautiful residence with a sometimes hostile climate.
We will remember in particular the charcoal prints of an unexpected Klavdij Sluban in this caulked atmosphere. His sensitive work proposes a re-reading of the spaces covered by the man of letters. And we lend ourselves to look through the great glass roof, through the play of reflections that are the hallmark of the photographer, the horizon to appreciate and find inspiration in the poet’s writings.
Then there are the large colour prints, made by Jean-Baptiste Hugo, himself Victor Hugo’s great grandson who spent a holiday in the beautiful house and who lovingly stares at the memories of a little boy climbing the big staircase leading to the roof walkway.
The exhibition “Portrait of a house, Chez Victor Hugo, Hauteville House, Guernsey” is to be seen until April 15, then head to Guernsey to visit Hauteville House which will reopen its doors for spring.
Portrait of a house,
At Victor Hugo’s, Hauteville House, Guernsey
7 February-15 April
VICTOR HUGO’S HOUSE
6, place des Vosges – 75004 Paris
Tel. 01 42 42 72 10 16 16
10am to 6pm every day except Mondays
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