Vue du musée Fenaille de RodezVue du musée Fenaille de Rodez
©Vue du musée Fenaille de Rodez|P.THEBAULT - CRT Occitanie
Gaze at theFenaille Museum.

A trip back in time at the Fenaille museum

Discover the history of Rouergues through the collections of Rodez museum history and archeology  exposing in ancestral mansion Hotel de Jouéry.

Collections of Rodez Fenaille museum

The main entrance to the Fenaille Museum is on Place Eugène Raynaldy in Rodez city centre. This modern façade actually conceals the more authentic Hôtel de Jouéry manor. The museum’s history and archaeology collections are as impressive as the building itself. Let’s dive into the history of the Rouergue province.

3 floors

The Fenaille Museum has a variety of collections from key periods:

  • Prehistory
  • Antiquity
  • Middle Ages 
  • Renaissance

They have one thing in common: all the items on display were found in the Rouergue province.

A central theme: sculpture.

Start your visit climbing up the 3 floors of the Fenaille Museum to travel back in time.

1st floor of Fenaille museum

The lift doors open under the sharp gaze of the statue-menhirs.

These statues are the first depictions of “almost life-size” man. The characters are whole and have a sculpted front, back and sides.

There are no reproductions here, just originals.

Lots of mysteries still surround the statue-menhirs so you can let your imagination run wild. A particularly peaceful atmosphere reigns over this gallery where our ancient ancestors keep watch.

This collection is unique in Europe.

Lower floor

We steps into the Rouergue province in Gallo-Roman times. Then we cross the Jouéry courtyard balconies into the Middle Ages.

The upper views of the courtyard are fabulous. In terms of collections at the Hôtel de Jouéry, you can see how techniques evolved: depictions of man are more and more realistic.

We go down another floor again

The Renaissance is ours for the taking. Like every floor, a statue represents the change in era. 16th/17th century religious art is on display here. The statues radiate more and more emotions: more colours, more expressions etc.

Auguste Rodin.

Last gallery: Auguste Rodin, portraits of Madame Fenaille

The Fenaille Museum’s permanent collection includes a selection of portraits of Madame Fenaille; an exceptional donation of six sculptures by the Rodin Museum.

 

Maurice Fenaille was a French oil industry pioneer, keen art enthusiast and collector who was hugely generous to French museums. He fed his passion by visiting artists of his time, buying pieces or commissioning art to suit his tastes and interests.

 

Fenaille met Rodin in 1885 and gradually became one of his most loyal patrons, a friend and unerring support for almost 30 years. In 1898 when the sculptor was at the peak of his career, he asked him to do a portrait of his wife, Marie Fenaille. The encounter with this model, who held her head so uniquely, produced multiple variations and countless sketches that reveal the winding roads of Auguste Rodin’s creativity.

On the ground floor of Fenaille museum

We end in the Jouéry courtyard, the heart of the Fenaille Museum and an architectural gem. It’s a true delight being in the middle of this courtyard, this square, this fabulous museum. The temporary exhibition hall completes the tour. A trip to the gift shop is our chance to pick up a souvenir medallion of our time in Rouergue.