A record half a million people went to the Louvre’s Eugène Delacroix blockbuster, which is headed to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the fall. The survey brings together 180 works that span the French painter’s career. With nearly 540,000 visitors, it is the busiest show in the history of the Paris museum.
The Louvre received a public relations boost this summer thanks to the video “Apesh**t” by Beyoncé and Jay-Z that was set within the historic institution, although Delacroix’s works did not make the cut in the couple’s video.
The show, which opened at the end of March and closed on July 23, saw visitor numbers peaking to around 7,200 a day in the past month. Delacroix is one of France’s greatest 19th-century painters, best known for his 1830 painting Liberty Leading the People, but there has not been a full-scale survey of his work in the past fifty years. Liberty will not be traveling to the Met for the September show.
The Delacroix exhibition, which has been co-organised with the Met, is an ambitious and collaborative endeavor between the French institution’s Sébastien Allard and Côme Fabre and Asher Miller from the Met. The New York museum’s version of the show, which will be slightly smaller with 150 paintings, will open on September 17. A few of the artist’s largest works won’t be able travel to the US show because of their size.