Entre Cour et Jardin: l’Hôtel Particulier · Empire Entertaining

Entre Cour et Jardin: l’Hôtel Particulier · Empire Entertaining

With Sarah D. Coffin | in English

Wednesday, May 16 at 11:30 a.m.
Individual Lecture Tickets - $45
54 W. Chicago Avenue

Online registration is closed but walk-ins are welcome. Merci !

The 2018 Symposium on the Arts of France
May 2, May 16 and June 6, 2018

May, 16 Lecture - Empire Entertaining in the Hôtel Particulier; Eugène de Beauharnais and other notables

During the French Empire, formal entertaining showed the magnificence often associated with Louis XIV rather than the greater intimacy of the smaller rooms of the Hôtel Particulier as arranged during the reign of Louis XV. With the concept of large, seated dinners at long tables, came a change in the importance and decoration of larger halls and tables for dining as well as in how the food was served. Large display pieces, such as surtout de tables appeared when the use of pattern arrangements of courses all served together from the table top-service à la française – gave way to sequential courses being served, by staff or a sideboard, known as service a la Russe. Some of the greatest designers produced centerpieces, sculptures, dining and decorative accoutrements to harmonize with Chef Carême and others’ new culinary heights.
Coffee at 11:00 a.m. Talk starts at 11:30 a.m.


About our speaker...

Sarah D. Coffin was appointed Curator and Head of the Product Design and Decorative Arts Department at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in 2004. With a primary expertise in the field of 17th and 18th century decorative arts, Coffin has worked extensively on 18th century and Arts and Crafts movement English and American silver and furniture, objects of vertu, portrait miniatures, jewelry and chess sets.

During her tenure, Coffin curated the blockbuster exhibition Set in Style: The Jewelry of Van Cleef & Arpels (2011), and served as co-curator of Rococo: The Continuing Curve, 1730-2008 and Feeding Desire: Design and Tools of the Table, 1500-2005. She is currently co-organizing the first major museum exhibition to focus on American taste in design during the 1920s, The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s.”

A frequent author, cataloguer and lecturer, Coffin has taught and/or lectured at NYU, George Washington University and Yale, as well as to numerous museum and private groups. Coffin holds an MA in Art and Architectural history from Columbia University and a BA with distinction in Art and Architectural History from Yale University.


Symposium series - Entre Cour et Jardin: L'Hôtel Particulier

In discovering the poetry of cities, the Seventeenth- Century enjoyed and cultivated the attractions of life lived therein. Simultaneously, it discovered the charms and pleasures of private life as opposed to the pomp and circumstance of the court. These revelations led to a Renaissance in domestic architecture and decoration which this lecture series will explore. Construction of stately mansions required changes in interiors, decorative arts and the way rooms were lived in. It spawned the development of the intellectual salons, often presided over by women, where wit and conversation were the calling card and flirtation was de rigueur. Three eminent historians, will guide us on a grand tour of a Paris you may never have seen.

May, 2 at 11:30 a.m. - A Peek Behind the Closed Doors

June, 6 at 11:30 a.m. - From Quai Voltaire to Fifth Avenue


The Symposium on the Arts of France, a cultural program of the Alliance Française de Chicago, is also a fundraising event providing support for our cultural, educational and outreach programming each year. The Alliance Française is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.