Normandy Impressionist Festival

“One morning, one of us was short of black, and so used blue: impressionism was born.” (Pierre-Auguste Renoir)

The Normandy Impressionist Festival puts Impressionism in the spotlight in hundreds of Normandy’s cultural venues.

Coucher de soleil sur la mer, à l'entrée du port du Havre
Étude de ciel sur le bassin du commerce du Havre - Tableau d'Eugène Boudin

Normandy Impressionist Festival

Once a three-yearly event, this artistic event is now held every 4 years. It’s an opportunity for everyone to discover or rediscover the exceptional heritage and all the creativity of the native land of the Impressionist pictorial movement.

On a scale never seen before in France, the Normandy Impressionist Festival benefits both from a wide range of experience throughout Normandy and a remarkable longevity extending over several months, generally from April to September.

This multidisciplinary artistic event receives more than 1.5 million visitors each year.

Le Havre, land of impressionism

The city of Le Havre and the Seine Estuary are considered the cradle of Impressionism. The city has indeed seen the growth of Boudin, Monet and Raoul Dufy. It has also been visited by many artists who have represented its special light in a wonderful way. About thirty kilometres away, Etretat and its majestic chalk cliffs have similarly inspired illustrious painters from this movement such as Camille Pissarro, Eugène Boudin or Johan-Barthold Jongkind. Claude Monet, for his part, has represented the cliffs of Etretat on more than 80 canvases! The MuMa in Le Havre is home to the second-largest Impressionist collection in France. 

Claude Monet, La Manneporte, reflets sur l'eau
La Manneporte, l'une des falaises d'Etretat

A cultural and tourist event since 2010

The festival unveils impressionism in all its forms. Painting, contemporary art, music, cinema, theatre, dance, photography, video, literature, conferences, sound and light, lunch on the grass, open-air dance cafes… the Normandy Impressionist Festival offers a diversified programme, open to all forms of artistic expression.

This vast event offers the opportunity to reconnect with cultural places through a variety of experiences. Visiting a unique exhibition in a prestigious museum in the morning, taking part in a theatrical stroll in a rural setting around a manor house in the afternoon, then ending the day with a dinner-concert are just some of the activities on offer. 

Oeuvre chorégraphique interprétée par Elias Girod et Gaël Sesboüé au MuMa
Une vache regarde l'objectif alors qu'elle se fait représenter par plusieurs artistes

The Normandy Impressionist Festival is ultimately a convivial festive event, open to all.

A nod to the Impressionist painters’ taste for Normandy landscapes: projections on monuments, pyrotechnic displays, cruises and crossings on the Seine, Impressionist tours and many other outdoor activities complete the festival’s offer, giving it a tourist, popular and festive dimension.


Art as an educational component

Lots of educational projects are held in consultation and close collaboration with educational institutions at all levels.

Supervised artistic workshops, visits, art history classes, film screenings for the very young, participatory events, meetings with authors … The projects just keep on growing to help students from primary school to university level discover this great pictorial movement, inviting them to appropriate and reinterpret it.

Check out the information and programme for the Normandy Impressionist Festival by following this link:

Impression, soleil levant - Tableau de Claude Monet