After a major renovation and restoration project, the doors to
the museum re-opened and it is no where near like an old building you would expect from
the inside as it had a complete revamp and very radical change. The team had the
building completely gutted to allow for them to completely customise the space and all of
the fittings inside are new, but the renovation was also a painstakingly slow process, for
example, the window frames on the outside were discovered to be blue, which was hidden
under layers and layers of paint over the ages, and this has made the old building come
into the present but with sympathy for the original.
The Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature, also known as The Museum of Hunting and Animal
Art is, as the name states, all about hunting and if you are an animal activist, then this
is not really going to be the place for you.
However, the museum is devoted to hunting through the ages and is divided into three main
areas of interconnecting rooms with exhibits of hunting weapons, from very early weapons
through to flintlocks and then into the modern shotguns. There is a trophy room with
mounted trophies, which range from bears, deer and African game plus there are stuffed
animals and also a section on art, which includes pictures of fox hunting, which are also
are displayed along side other contemporary exhibits such as engraved gold dog collars.
In fact, the museum is displayed in such a way that it tries to get the visitor thinking
about the ancient and often mystical relationship between humans and the wild creatures
that we have hunted, feared or tamed over the years and in some ways it is like thinking
about the wolf and the devil.
The Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature experience is extremely moving and in our opinion
probably not one of the best places to take children, as there is no attempt to erase the
reality of brute force and suffering that us humans have inflicted on animals over the
course of hundreds or years. Yet they do have tours for children in an attempt to
try and educate them on cruelty and how we are looking at preserving life, rather than
hunting for pleasure and in some cases virtually to extinction.
This is a small museum and you can comfortably see the displays within one to two hours,
but there is also a bookshop on site as well.
The museum is always closed on a Monday and on national holidays, but is open every other
day from 11am through to 6pm.
Address & Contact Details:
Musée de la Chasse et de la Nature
Hôtel de Guénégaud des Brosses
60 Rue des Archives
Telephone: 1 53 01 92 40