A site dedicated to contemporary art
The Commanderie de Peyrassol is a real open-sky museum. The site hosts a collection of sculptures which complete the collection of contemporary art and monumental sculptures of Daniel Buren, Dubuffet, Bertrand Lavier among others and presents the artists’ visions of the world in the middle of the vines, isolated from the world and the passing of time..
The Permanent Exhibition of Art of the Commanderie de Peyrassol
Philippe Austruy wished to present works of art protected from badweather. In the beginning, he planned on building only a small chapel to put on display a work of Franck Stella that he particularly liked and which was stored in a small space in the winery. During a lunch, Diane and Bernar Venet suggested him to go further and create a permanent collection. This new artistic entity became an extension of Valerie Bach gallery « La Patinoire Royale », in Brussels.
In one piece, the permanent exhibition of Peyrassol is a vast room with natural lighting coming from the skylight. Its modern design was a real challenge: how to integrate modern architecture at a large scale without removing the intemporality of the historical buildings?
To solve the equation, the new space should not be perceived as a singular separated identity but needed to be designed as a covered space inside the path of the monumental sculpture, a giant hallway where people can wander inside, amid the vines. Constructed like a sculpture, the building breaks the code of classic architecture. There are no doors, no windows, no roof, inspired by the movement of Land Art.
On one side, you will find a monumental mural and on the other side a scree, typical of Peyrassol, these two walls are connected by a gigantic shape of weathering steel, above the ground, highlighting its shape by its horizontality.
A real sculptural object
The gap between concrete, steel and stone hides the access to the permanent exhibition. The visitor can go on the rooftop using the asymmetrical walkway in weathering steel, a real sculptural object. Once on the terrace, the only safety guard is a peripheral pond, offering a 360° perspective on the vineyards and the woods of Peyrassol.
Preserving the natural slope of the ground in order to preserve the environment was the guiding idea for the conception of the permanent exhibition. The shape had to be an operational rectangle. The light had to come from a central patio with dimed light, a pond and grey concrete as the only material..
The interior space is designed based on these grounds with a strong statement, a bare, solemn, almost mystical environment, the reflection of a Templar building. The slope has been arranged in different levels with non-rectilinear lines which creates a multitude of subspaces to put the monumental sculptures on display.
An art work of Bernar Venet disrupts the tour of the park by creating a link between the rooftop and the permanent exhibition, with two broken lines, emerging from the pond and ending on the terrace.
You can visit the permanent collection of contemporary art of the Commanderie de Peyrassol every day, only during guided tours from 10 am to 4 pm*. Booking is required.
*only one visit at 2.30 pm from mid-October to April.
Click on this link to get more information to prepare your visit..