French Art Fridays

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Want to learn about French Art in a fun & friendly environment while sipping a glass of fine French wine?

Then join our  French Art Fridays !

In 2017, Arty Fridays will cover the Arts during the “Old Regime” of France, a millennium that saw dramatic mutations in artistic movements.  Begun in the middle ages under the patronage of the Church, the Arts evolved over time through the Renaissance awakening, the Age of enlightenment, and the revolutionary ideals.

Arty Fridays will travel through a thousand years of French Art history, to present Artists in the Kingdom of France, from anonymous medieval artists until the romantic and passionate painters of the early 19th century.  Over this extensive period, the role of artists and their position in society developed significantly.  The subjects of their works also expanded dramatically, together with their vision of the world and its visual representation, and Florence Thiriot will introduce their diversity and evolution over 5 talks through the year. 

The first one (February 10th )  will cover Versailles and the Arts in the 18th century,  in connection with Versailles summer exhibition at the AAG in Canberra , before reverting to  a chronological progression  from  medieval Roman and Gothic Arts.

The Alliance Française de Brisbane has launched a series of friendly conferences led by Florence Thiriot (our art specialist. cf description below).

Whether you already have some knowledge in Art History or just an interest in the area, these talks are sure to bring you something new!

Check out the program below and order your tickets online on the links. 

PRICE/SESSION (including a glass of French wine!)
: $25 for AF members / $30 for non members


Florence Thiriot  is a French teacher at the Alliance Français de Brisbane and is passionate about art.

She comes from a family of Art specialists and took her passion for visual arts across several continents.  After growing up in the shadow of the Ecole des Beaux Arts, Florence spent her life between Europe, West Africa and finally Australia.

Not only will Florence transmit you her passion for French Art art but she will also give you lots of insights about the context in France (sociological, political etc..)  as well as an insider’s guide to the best museums and galleries in Paris (not just the Musée d’Orsay or the Pompidou Center!).


French Medieval Arts


The Middle-Ages, a vast period of almost 1000 years between the antiquity and the Renaissance, is often perceived as Dark Ages and an artistic desert, when commoners fought for survival under the tutelage of illiterate war lords.

This is not entirely untrue, but the Arts were still flourishing, thanks to the Church, which acted as a patron of the Arts and keeper of knowledge, and artists developed their creativity and innovation around religiously inspired themes.

This talk will focus on the Romanesque and Gothic periods, which covers the second half of the Middle-Ages. Both styles initiated in France and spread through Europe, each with distinctive features in architecture, sculpture and painting.  Artistic works had to inspire and glorify Christianity, while telling stories the vastly illiterate population could understand. This approach lead to the creation of magnificent buildings of striking architecture and lavish decoration, and Florence Thiriot will present its most striking representations

Tickets for this session:
- $25 for AF members :    ORDER ONLINE
- $30 for non members:  ORDER ONLINE



Friday 10th February 2017 - 6.30pm
VERSAILLES in the 18th century - A Royal Home

The Château de Versailles is one of the most beautiful achievements of 18th-century French art. In 1682, Louis XIV moved the court and government of France to Versailles, a symbol of royal absolutism and embodiment of classical French art.

The Château de Versailles, the seat of power until 1789, has continued to unfurl its splendor over the course of centuries. Each of the French kings who lived there after Louis XIV and until the Revolution in 1789 added improvements to make it more beautiful and suited to their lifestyles, complementing the estate and softening its rigid schedule.

Friday 2nd December 2016 - 6.30pm
VERSAILLES: Louis XIV's Grandiose Project

The Château de Versailles is one of the most beautiful achievements of 17th-century French art. The site was originally one of king Louis XIII’s hunting lodges, before his son Louis XIV transformed and expanded it, moving the court and government of France from the Louvre to Versailles in 1682.  

The Château de Versailles, the seat of power until 1789, has continued to unfurl its splendor over the course of centuries. Louis XIV chose the site to build the palace we know today, the symbol of royal absolutism and embodiment of classical French art, displaying his royal power to impress visitors and building a golden cage to control the French nobility.


Friday 28th October 2016 - 6.30pm

French Women Artists
Women tend to have a secondary role in the world of visual arts.  Whores or Madonnas, models or maids, muses or trophies, they most often lived in the shadows of The Artists, even when they were the subject of the most revered master works.   However, a few women of outstanding character asserted themselves as professional artists and took a prominent role in the art world, where their talent and creativity received the credit they deserved.  Society didn’t respect artists until recently, associating the art world with depravity and low moral standards. Achieving recognition and the pursuit of their passion was not easy, and some, like Camille Claudel, lost their sanity in the journey.  But most of those artists were persistent enough to overcome obstacles, and this talk wishes to pay tribute to some astonishing ladies with fabulous talents.

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