This fall, Europe’s museums focus on ancient cultures, artists and creatures. Prepare to be dazzled by precious jewels, wowed by a Game of Thrones-esque warrior tribe, and toast to the first winemakers in history. Make plans to visit Europe’s museums this fall — and see these best exhibits on deck.
Yves Saint Laurent Museum in ParisOct. 3, 2017 – January 2019.
A temporary museum will open in legendary designer Yves Saint Laurent’s Paris studio and office for a little over a year, starting this fall. The space has been restored to provide visitors with an authentic look at his workspace. Fifty garments, accessories, sketches, photos and videos are part of the exhibit. Set in the fashion capital of the world, the museum presents the largest exhibition of YSL’s legacy. Museeyslparis.Com.
Treasures of the Mughals and the Maharajas at Palazzo Ducale in VeniceSept. 9, 2017 – Jan. 3, 2018.
This fall, Venice will sparkle more than it already does when over 270 gems and jewels come to Palazzo Ducale. The museum has Italy’s first exhibition of jewelry from the Al Thani Collection that was made in and inspired by the Indian subcontinent. Gems and jewels have long been an important part of culture and daily dress in that part of the world. The collection, which spans five centuries, includes items from the descendants of Genghis Khan and the great Maharajas. It’s recognized for its sheer beauty and remarkable craftsmanship. Palazzoducale.Visitmuve.It.
Scythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia at the British Museum in LondonSept. 14, 2017 – Jan. 14, 2018.
Between 900 and 200 B.C., Nomadic warrior tribes roamed an area from southern Russia to China and the northern Black Sea. Siberian permafrost buried — but preserved — artifacts related to the Scythians and for the first time in 40 years, the British Museum will tell their story to U.K. Audiences and visitors. A major loan came from the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, along with loans from several other museums, that contributed to the 200 objects in the exhibition, which includes textiles, fur-lined garments, unique horse headgear and tattooed human remains. Britishmuseum.Org.
Georgia, Cradle of Viticulture at Cite du Vin in Bordeaux, FranceJuly 31 – Nov. 5, 2017.
Some 8,000 years ago, the first wine in history was being made in what would become the country of Georgia. Fittingly, Bordeaux’s recently opened wine-focused museum has partnered with the Georgian National Museum in Tbilisi to educate visitors about the origins of wine and its role in agriculture, royalty, religious beliefs and everyday life. Georgia has provided 125 items, works of art and photographs for the exhibit. Bonus: Tours end with a wine tasting. Laciteduvin.Com.
Johan Maelwael at the Rijksmuseum in AmsterdamOct. 6, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018.
Born in 1370, Johan Maelwael is credited as the first Northern Netherlandish painter and became one of the most successful artists in Europe in the Middle Ages. The Rijksmuseum dedicates a show to his legacy this fall. At the center of the exhibit is one of his only surviving works — La Grande Pietà ronde — on loan from the Louvre for the first time since 1962. It also features 50 medieval works, including paintings, illuminated manuscripts, precious metalwork and sculpture by Maelwael and his contemporaries. Rijksmuseum.Nl.
Alice Boner in India: A Life for Art at Museum Rietberg in ZurichSept. 23, 2017 – Jan. 14, 2018.
As Switzerland’s museum dedicated to Eastern cultures, it’s fitting that Museum Rietberg will feature Swiss artist Alice Boner, who spent four decades living and working as an artist, patron, collector and art historian in the Indian city of Varanasi, beginning in 1935. She’s credited with generating awareness of and interest in Indian art throughout the world. On display will be her collection of Indian sculptures and miniatures that was donated to the museum, plus photographs, sketches, drawings, paintings diary entries, correspondence and manuscripts. Rietberg.Ch/en-gb.
Dinosaur Babies at the National Museum Cardiff in WalesMay 27 – Nov. 5, 2017.
Bring the kids to Wales this fall for an up-close-and-personal dinosaur experience with a focus on the littlest dinos. “Fossil evidence suggests that some dinosaurs were caring parents who protected their eggs and looked after their young,” said Caroline Buttler, head of palaeontology from the National Museum. The museum delves into dinosaur family life through eggs, nests and embryos, including three real eggs with embryos inside. There are also replicas of eggs, nests and skeletons from all over the world in this hands-on exhibition. Museum.Wales.
The King of Spain’s Grandchildren at the Palazzo Pitti in FlorenceSept. 19, 2017 – Jan. 7, 2018|.
Following the acquisition of a work by Anton Raphael Mengs that portrays two of Spanish King Charles III’s grandchildren who lived in Italy — specifically in the Pitti Palace, where this exhibition takes place — the museum will show a collection of the King’s relatives. It’s assumed that Mengs painted the highlighted piece on site before it was shown to the Florentine people and then delivered to the King in Spain. Other works are on loan from the Prado and the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. Gallerieuffizimostre.It.
Gauguin the Alchemist at the Grand Palais in ParisOct. 11, 2017 – Jan. 22, 2018.
Through a large exhibition of his work, the Grand Palais turns attention this fall to Paul Gauguin’s creative process and experimentation with a variety of media. The post-impressionist is known for his paintings and sculptures — many of which will be on display, along with ceramics, blocks of wood, engravings and drawings. The Art Institute of Chicago and the Musée d’Orsay worked together on this exhibit, which includes many items on loan from around the world. Of course, Gauguin’s Tahitian works are included, with a special hologram of his hut and final creative studio, which is considered a work of art itself. Grandpalais.Fr.