Nancy is a must for any art and architecture lovers as it has a wonderful collection of art nouveau buildings around the old town. It has long been recognised as a city of culture and academia and it was here that the famous glass designer Emile Galle established the “Ecole de Nancy” that flourished during the Art Nouveau period.
There are also many fine examples of buildings from the 18th century in Nancy, the oldest being the cathedral. There is also the Arch of Triumph and the Palace de la Carriere. Nancy also has some luscious green spaces, with the Jardin Botanique du Montet and the Jardin Dominique Alexandre Godron being two particularly fine examples.
Nancy is best explored on foot but with so many fascinating buildings to see it is essential that you wear comfortable footwear. You would be well advised to break in your footwear gradually – you can choose a pair of walking shoes and order them online at Cotswold Outdoors which has an extewnsive range of walking clothing, footwear and equipment.
Nancy’s cultural contributions can be found in the Musee de l’Ecole de Nancy, the Museum of Fine Arts of Nancy and the Lorraine History Museum. All have fine collections of work down the ages with the Musee de l’Ecole exhibiting a marvellous collection of the works of Galle, Louis Majorelle and the Daum brothers, they also have Renaissance paintings by Perugino, Tintoretto, the impressionists Manet and Monet and modern works by Picasso and Modigliani.
Art Nouveau in Nancy
Due to the overwhelming influence of the Ecole de Nancy and its designers the Art Nouveau curves and stylised flowers are to be found throughout the city. They appear in the facades of buildings, decorating shelves in shops, on lampposts and railings. Everywhere you look you will see the imprint of the art schools hand.
This gives Nancy a fairytale; playful feel to it and you can’t help but enjoy a simple walk around the town glimpsing the artistic flourishes at every turn. The Chambre du Commerce et Industrie in Rue Henri Poincare has marvellous Gruber stained glass windows and Majorelle ironwork. The Banque du Credit Lyonnias on Rue St Georges is equally as beguiling.
Even apartment blocks are elaborately decorated in the manner, with Lang House, Bergeret House and the France-Lanord Apartments particularly gorgeous examples. The interior of the Brasserie Excelsior is a wonderful explosion of Art Nouveau with glass, plaster and ironwork throughou
Along with the array of Art Nouveau attractions in Nancy there is also the baroque Stanislav Palace, with its pleasant gardens and fountains, the natural wonders of the Aquarium Museum.