CINEMAPOLIS at the Masséna Museum


#NICE Here is an exhibition where everything is presented in shots and sequences, where cinema is contemplated in the development of a city from the end of the 19th century. “Nice, cinémapolis” is this story of an encounter between the light of a city, its geography, its tourist activity and the appearance of a new art, cinema. 123 years of this history in Nice are recounted here. In 1896 the Lumière Brothers settled in the city. Carnival and social events are as many images that the visitor wishes to preserve. The techniques are being refined at a dazzling rate. Very quickly the cinema imposes itself as a determining economic vector with the appearance of many production studios, Pathé, Gaumont, and some more modest, scattered in simple villas until in the hinterland. The reports are gradually giving way to fiction, gigantic sets are created, costumes, stars and extras are needed by the hundreds. Theatres are multiplying

This exciting adventure is recounted here as in a chronological travelling from rare objects – the first devices intended both for recording and broadcasting the film, documents, posters and photographs. In 1919, the Victorine studios were born. All the imagination of an era is built there, fantasies of an orientalist sensuality, social poetry, madness and anguish of the pre-war period. Nice was then a cosmopolitan city where Russians and Americans met. A luxurious tourism spreads on the Promenade des Anglais and borders the Old Nice and a people attached to its Mediterranean identity. At the same time, the Casino or Negresco were being built..

This hundredth anniversary of the Victorine is a tribute to cinema, punctuated by a reminder of the cult films that were shot there, The children of Paradise or The American night As if the latter were a nod to this other space so close and so distant, where, in parallel, on the hills of Hollywood and California, at the beginning of the 20th century the same story was being constructed. Nice, Cinémapolis” is this meeting point of reality and imagination, strewn with all the hopes and dramas of history. The exhibition develops in a luminous scenography; we go from discovery to discovery, the course of time opens up to other perspectives: One hundred years later, the Studios de la Victorine begin their rebirth. The journey through time continues.


CINEMAPOLIS, as part of “L’Odyssée de cinéma à Nice”.

from May 17 to September 30, 2019

Masséna Museum

Lili Tisseyre

Journalist then production director, Lili Tisseyre directed the creation and editorial management of the first web content for the Endemol group’s Real Tv show in the early 2000s. Holder of a...

View Profile and Articles

More Contemporary art articles


#NICE Two artists, Simon Bérard and Tom Giampieri, invest "the castle", i. e. the vast room formerly devoted to an electric generator, at the end of the courtyard of L'Espace à Vendre. Both…
#NICE Confining oneself in an illustrative approach despite the variety of approaches and forms that it can take remains the risk of any thematic exhibition. Very often images and genres are juxtaposed or…
#Bordeaux and its region is acquiring a new cultural tool, the Méca, in which the Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine is settling in cohabitation with two major regional actors in artistic creation. A magical setting to…