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Festival Normandie Impressionniste – April 3 to September 6, 2020

Every few years, Normandy hosts ” Festival Normandie Impressionniste”, the Normandy Impressionist Festival. The next major festival will be held between the dates April 3 to September 6, 2020. This festival is a major artistic event, attracting over a million visitors.

Normandie & the Impressionists

One cannot separate the rich history of the Impressionism Art Movement and the Normandy region of France. It was here in Normandy where impressionism was born and developed.

Painting by Claude Monet-Etretat
Etretat Cliffs painted by Monet,Courbet and Boudin

Etretat Normandie
Etretat Cliffs, Alabastor Coast of Normandy

Back in the 1870s, when Impressionism was developing, Normandy, as a region of intense light and natural beauty attracted the painters. Paris-based artists caught the train out from Gare St-Lazare (itself immortalized by Monet), and headed for Normandy.

claude monet artwork - The Gare Saint-Lazare
Claude Monet Famous Painting: The Gare Saint-Lazare [Public Domain]

The impressionists practiced a totally new technique called plein-air painting. They set up their easels outdoors to paint the landscape surrounding them.

These impressionist painters included Sisley, Monet, Morisot, Manet, Pissarro, Boudin and Gauguin to name a few.

Claude Monet loved Normandy so much that he made Giverny his home for over 40 years.

Impressionsim Museum in Giverny hosts activities for Festival Normandie Impressionniste
Monet’s House & Gardens, Giverny
Tom Flemming  on Flickr CC BY-NC 2.0
Festival Normandie Impressionniste and Giverny
In the Footsteps of the Impressionists – walking itineraries all across Normandy
Photo by JR P on Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

A Festival Celebrating Its Rich Impressionism Heritage


Festival Normandie Impressionniste celebrates the close affinity between Normandy and Impressionism. It is one of the largest events of its kind in all of France.

As a multi-disciplinary event it includes:

  • Specially curated Impressionism exhibitions
  • Contemporary art exhibitions
  • Music concerts
  • Cinema
  • Theater
  • Photography exhibitions
  • Sound & Light shows and more

Impressionism Exhibitions

Impressionism masterpieces from around the world are brought to Normandy and showcased in different exhibitions throughout the region.

Some of the museums that will participate in the 2020 festival and will showcase special curated impressionism exhibitions for the festival are:

MuMa Le Havre will host special exhibitions for the Festival Normandie Impressionniste
MuMa Le Havre – Photo by damian entwistle on Flickr
(CC BY-NC 2.0)


MuMa Art Museum, Le Havre
MuMa Art Museum, Le Havre @Lachèvre

Contemporary Impressionism Art

The festival also promotes contemporary interpretations of Impressionism by inviting French and foreign artists to produce new works in the Impressionism avant-garde spirit.

Festivities Galore!!

The main characteristic of Festival Normandie Impressionniste is that it is a celebration. Everyone is invited to participate in the festivities organised by towns, associations and private individuals.

honfleur normandie
Honfleur, Normandy – The birthplace of Impressionism

This festival is a wonderful and exciting way to see Normandy as many beautiful cities, towns & villages all over Normandy will host this festival.

No doubt that holiday destinations like Dieppe, Rouen, Caen, Honfleur, Le Havre and Giverny will host special events.

Activities, concerts and exhibitions will be non-stop making Normandy one huge artistic carnival!

Sound and Light Show on the Cathedral facade - Rouen travel
Sound & Light Show on the Rouen Notre-Dame Cathedral
Photo by mout1234 (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Save the date!! 3rd April until 6th September, 2020

This festival only happens every three years so if you are planning a trip to Normandy between April and September in 2020 you are IN LUCK!

The Festival Normandie Impressionniste 2020 program isn’t yet finalised. However there’s no doubt that this huge event will appeal to all art lovers.

Stay tuned for program details from the official website

Panel showing one of Camille Pissarro paintings of Dieppe Port, Normandy
Panel showing one of Camille Pissarro paintings of Dieppe Port, Normandy
Photo by homo_sapiens on Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)