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Musée des Arts Forains - Fairground Arts Museum

France has a great fairground tradition and the Musée des Arts Forains or in English known as the Museum of Fairground Arts is dedicated to providing the public a fairground experience with some reconstruction's of old fairground rides and attractions.

This is a private museum for the public but is only open by booking an appointment prior, yet it will provide you with a fantastic opportunity of experiencing fairground rides and how the rides have improved and progressed through the years from the 19th century onwards.

Fairground Museum

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Musée des Arts Forains - Fairground Arts Museum

This museum originally started when Jean Paul Favand, who was an actor and antiques dealer, decided to start collecting objects from fairgrounds and the entertainment world and Jean has been gathering and restoring his collection of fairground works of art for over thirty years now.

Although the hopes of a State funded museum never came about, Jean Paul Favand wished to keep his collection going and this led him to set up a private museum, which was, and still is funded through hosting special events and of course the generosity of donations.

The Museum of Fairground Arts was the first site to be installed in the Pavillons de Bercy, which is located in an old wine storage facility situated in the South East part of Paris in the 12th arrondissement, along the banks of the River Seine.  It is designed around the theme of fairground art and it was followed by two other sites called the Venetian Rooms and the Théâtre du Merveilleux, and each of these event venues illustrate festive or entertainment themes within the historical buildings.

The Musée des Arts Forains along with The Venetian Rooms and the Piazza plus Le Théâtre du Merveilleux, or in English called The Theatre of Marvels is on a 1.5 hectare site and is surrounded by 3,000 square metres of paved courtyards and tree-lined streets.  And preserving a unique part of the Paris city heritage, this collection is now considered to be one of the most extensive in its category.

This museum has a fabulous collection of restored merry-go-rounds, fairground stalls and attractions in a reconstruction of a fair from 1850 through to 1950 with diversity.  And it is a fun place to visit as it is interactive, as you are actually allowed to touch and play on the attractions, like taking a ride on a restored bicycle merry-go-round. 

Visits to this unusual museum in Paris are only organised on demand and are scheduled according to the number of requests received and the availability of the three themed rooms or whether they are already booked for one of the private functions they hold.

Group visits for 15 to 50 people with a guided tour can be scheduled for weekdays or even weekends but only by appointment and subject to availability with Diane as your guide by telephoning: 1 43 40 16 15.

Address & Contact Details:

Musée des Arts Forains
Les Pavillons de Bercy
53 Avenue des Terroirs de France

Telephone: 1 43 40 16 22 

Fairground Arts Museum In Paris

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