Coming soon! Great art exhibitions to see on the French Riviera

One of the best things about living on the French Riviera is the number of art galleries, studios and exhibitions featuring classic and contemporary art.

Whether you’re a fan of modern pop-up installations or classical art, there are so many excellent places to see or visit that you’ll have trouble deciding where to go.

Art on the French Riviera

If you are visiting the region for a week or longer, there are a number of must-see French Riviera museums that have spectacular art collections including rare paintings, sculptures, ceramics or photographs.

If you are here for a weekend up to 14 days, take your pick from a handful of art-based attractions or galleries – many are free entry or very cheap to visit so perfect for people on a budget or not willing to pay a lot of money for a sightseeing pass.

Temporary Exhibitions

The French Riviera is an excellent destination for art lovers.  There are a number of interesting temporary exhibitions coming up which I thought I’d share the details of below:


On now until 11 June, the 32nd edition of Grand Prix des Artistes with exhibitions of sculpture, paintings and photography is being hosted at Espace Miramar in central Cannes.  The ‘Artiste d’Honneur’ this year is local Cannois photographer and talented graphic designer Vivi A who will showcase photos from her series Miroir Miroir.

grand prix des artistes

Grand Prix des Artistes – Exposition in Cannes at Espace Miramar until 11 June 2017

From 16 to 27 June, there will be a free photography exhibition with large format photos featuring Cassius Clay a.k.a Muhammad Ali along the Croisette.   I’ll definitely be checking this one out to see some candid snaps of one of the world’s most celebrated sports figures who sadly passed away last year.

Muhammad Ali, Cannes 1982


From 14 July to 10 September 2017, the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco will host an exhibition, The Forbidden City in Monaco: Imperial Court Life in China, about the Imperial Chinese dynasty (1644–1911).

Jointly curated by Jean-Paul Desroches, honorary general curator, and Wang Yuegong, director of the Imperial Court Life Department at the Forbidden City – the exhibition will bring together some 200 historic exhibits, from the former palace of the emperors and loans from major European and American collections: the Musée Cernuschi and the Musée du Louvre in Paris, the V&A in London, the Royal Museums of Art and History in Brussels, and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington.

The personalities of the Qing emperors are a crucial element of the exhibition, most notably in the cases of Kangxi (1662–1722), Yongzheng (1723–1735) and Qianlong (1736–1795) and will feature ceremonial costumes, portraits, furniture, precious objets d’art including ceramics and lacquerware, displays of calligraphy, and scientific instruments, some of which are ranked as national treasures.

The Forbidden City is one of the most impressive palace complexes, and the world’s most popular tourist venue, with some 10 million visitors annually.

I am looking forward to this exhibition and seeing how they bring to life the Temple of Heaven, the Throne Room, the Buddhist temple, the Temple of the Ancestors and the tea pavilion.   Tickets cost just €5 per adult, with free entry for 18 years and under.  Tickets are sold via Monte Carlo Ticket : Forbidden City


From 23 June to 15 October at the Galerie Lympia at Nice Port, an exhibition will showcase 50 major works of Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966) including sculptures, paintings, lithographs and drawings.   Thanks to the Giacometti Foundation, the artworks will show the variety of techniques he used through his career.

art nice french riviera

Giacometti at the Galerie Lympia in Nice

Galerie Lympia has an interesting history – known as Lou Barri-Lonc, it is the oldest building at Nice Port. In the 19th-century it was transformed into a prison with the convicts put to work building the roads that connect the port area to Nice city (prior to that, the area was a penal colony where the prisoners from Villefranche were employed to dig the basins for Port Lympia).  Consisting of 2 buildings (the penal colony building with roof terrace and the Clock Tower), it has been restored and now offers an original art space with an eclectic programme forecast to broaden Nice’s art venues.

Galerie Lympia at Nice Port

Saint Tropez

Summer time alludes to al fresco living and where better than to host an art exhibition that Pampelonne Beach?

From 29 June to 02 July, Art Pampelonne will present a selection of international galleries showcasing contemporary artists at 20 Route d’Epi at Ramatuelle.

Located a short walk from Nikki Beach’s famed property, Art Pampelonne will host an elite audience of tastemakers with a selection of curated events that engage the international art community including VIP benefits and free entry for kids under 12 years of age.

art st tropez

(logo: Art Pampelonne)

The schedule is:

Thursday 29 June

12pm-2pm     Vernissage (VIP Invitation + Press Preview only)

2pm-9pm       Public Opening

Friday 30 June , Saturday 1st July and Sunday 2nd July*

From 12pm-9pm     General Show Hours (*12pm-8pm on Sunday)

Note:  Press accreditation is at the organiser’s discretion and includes the vernissage as well as public show hours.

Tickets for Art Pampelonne can be purchased here:

Please share this post on social media. thank you!



An Artist’s Journey in Nice : Guest Blog

Today’s guest blog is from Erick Sabelskjold, the Managing Director of a Nice-based fine art agency, Sabelskjold Art Agency.   I would like to thank and acknowledge Erick’s input in writing this blog article and sharing some of his favorite places to enjoy art in Nice and the surrounds.  Enjoy!


Art in Nice and surrounds

I have the fantastic fortune to live in Nice, France, the heart of the French Riviera.  Every day here feels like you are transported to years gone by when Sophia Loren would grace the promenade with her beauty and elegance. Nice is a magical city filled with excitement, beauty and romance.


There is so much more to Nice then the nightlife, trendy cafes, and incredible cuisine.

For those of you that have visited Nice before you know the city is bathed in stunning captivating art. This art in not just in galleries, the city itself is a work of art.  From Promenade des Anglais to the Russian Orthodox Cathedral, there are new discoveries waiting around every turn.  It is difficult to narrow down the best places to see art in Nice so I will go with my personal favorites.


My favorite part of Nice hands down is Old Town.  The walking streets of Old Town (Vieux Nice) slows the pace of the city and as you make your way through the butchers and leather makers that have been here for generations you become captivated by the character and beauty of the city.

The streets of Old Town are lined with talented, passionate painters and sculptors. There are several art tours available in Nice but believe me discovering these hidden gems is much more exciting on your own. Rue Droite is an excellent place to start your adventure through old town walking streets.  Here, you will find many internationally collected artists.


One of the most interesting Old Town locations to see art in Nice is Cathédrale Sainte-Réparate.  The captivating murals painted inside the church are just the beginning.  The church also has 3 organs and an altar with the remains of the martyred St Reparata. The story of St Reparata found within the church is fascinating; and then to see the altar of her remains in such a picturesque church is moving.


No trip to Old Town Nice would be complete without a breathtaking view from Tower Bellanda.  You can either take the stairs to the the top of the tower or pay a small fee for the elevator. Looking out over the turquoise water of the Mediterranean Sea, you can understand why for centuries artists have been inspired and motivated to create art in Nice.


There is no shortage of Museums in the city of Nice and surrounding areas, from public to private and even the homes of famous artists that lived in the area. At the top of my museum list is the Picasso Museum in Antibes, just a short train ride away.  The museum is set in an old castle fort right on the sea with views looking out over the yacht marina to the snow capped Alps.


The museum houses an amazing collection of Picasso’s work while he lived in Antibes including paintings, sculptures and intimate photos of him working in his studio. There are also several other famous artists in the Museum like Nicolas de Stael. The museum has a patio that looks directly over the sea with interesting sculptures.


You don’t have to be an art aficionado to enjoy all the art that Nice has to offer.  Awe-inspiring art surrounds you everywhere you go in this beautiful city.  From the cafe lined streets, to the museums and art studios, there is art in Nice for everyone to be moved and fascinated by.  In the heart of the French Riviera, I know you will find something beautiful that will touch your soul.

Sabelskjold Art Agency, located in Nice and South Florida, specializes in art collecting experiences and helping clients create the perfect custom piece of art for their space. We also partner with interior designers sourcing the perfect piece of art to complete their project.  Sabelskjold Art Agency is client forward focused and provides unmatched client experiences and services.