Camouflaged within a 19th century private mansion in the 16th arrondissement, Musée d’Ennery shelters almost 7,000 objects of Chinese and Japanese art behind its doors.
Step into what was once home to Clémence and Adolphe d’Ennery (dramatist and novelist). At a time when Japonisme was all the rage, Clémence d’Ennery pursued her admiration of the eastern arts from afar, and despite never visiting Asia, managed to amass an incomparably vast collection of netsuke, ceramics, ivory and lacquerwork. She had a shrewd eye for rare, fascinating objects, and would comb art fairs and auctions in order to expand her collections.
The couple would invite a carefully filtered public to admire their chaotic Chinese and Japanese treasures but in 1894, she donated everything to the state, and under the careful supervision of Georges Clemenceau began preparations to open Musée d’Ennery to the public.
The apartment’s high ceilings and domineering alcoves make for a perfect exhibition space, and as you marvel at the processional masks on the walls and the hundreds of netsuke partying inside the specially designed cabinets, you get a real sense of the passion and tastes of the couple whose apartment remains almost unchanged from the days when they lived there.
Please note: Musée d’Ennery’s curation and management is run through Musée Guimet, but you must make an advance booking via email to firstname.lastname@example.org to visit. The free tours for 15 people at a time are in French, led by a knowledgeable guide, last an hour and take place every Saturday morning.