Atelier des Lumières

Atelier
des Lumières

An historic area

The Chemin-Vert foundry was established in 1835 by the Plichon brothers, Jacques François Alexandre and Hilaire Pierre, in order to meet the needs of the navy and railway companies by supplying them with high-quality cast iron parts. Bruno Monnier, the President of Culturespaces, discovered the former disused foundry. He had the idea of creating a Digital Art Centre in Paris. After major renovation works, the Atelier des Lumières opened its doors to the public.

1835 - The Chemin-Vert foundry

1835

The Chemin-Vert foundry

The Chemin-Vert foundry was established in 1835 by the Plichon brothers, Jacques François Alexandre and Hilaire Pierre. During the Industrial revolution, the two brothers, who came from a family of ploughmen, became founders.

1835 - The Chemin-Vert foundry

At the age of forty-six, Jacques François Alexandre established the Chemin-Vert foundry with his brother in order to meet the needs of the navy and railway companies by supplying them with high-quality cast iron parts.

The factory covered a surface area of 3,126 m2 and employed sixty people. The foundry produced castings of all types of parts in cast iron, based on designs and models, up to a weight of 10,000 kg. The manufactured parts were subsequently used for the navy, locomotives, and internal combustion and diesel engines.

1859 - The success of the foundry

1859

The success of the foundry

On 21 February 1859, Jacques François Alexandre passed the foundry on to his two sons, Jean and Edouard. They ran the company under the name Plichon Brothers.

1859 - The success of the foundry

Edouard Plichon was recognised as a highly skilled technician by his colleagues. He chaired the Chambre Syndicale des Mécaniciens, Chaudronniers et Fondeurs, and was subsequently made Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur. In 1882, he opened a branch of the company, the Grenelle steel mill in the 15th arrondissement.

Four generations of the Plichon family successively ran the foundry and the business flourished for a hundred years.

1929 - The closure of the foundry

1929

The closure of the foundry

The international crisis of 1929 spelled the end of the business, which was already facing stiff competition from welding and forging companies, and the manufacture of the first plastic materials.

1929 - The closure of the foundry

The company was dissolved in 1935; the site and buildings were sold to the Martin family, which is the current owner.

For 65 years, the foundry was used by a tool manufacturing company. The large hall serves as an exhibition space. The company moved in 2000.

2013 - Rediscovery of the foundry

2013

Rediscovery of the foundry

Bruno Monnier, the President of Culturespaces, discovered the former disused foundry and had the idea of creating a Digital Art Centre in Paris. The Martin family, which was interested in the project, agreed to rent out the great hall and its annexes to him.

2013 - Rediscovery of the foundry

The role of an art centre is to decompartmentalise, and that is why digital technology is so important in twenty-first-century exhibitions. Used for creative purposes, this technology has become a formidable vector for dissemination, and is capable of creating links between eras, adding dynamism to artistic practices, amplifying emotions, and reaching the largest possible audience

Bruno Monnier, President of Culturespaces

2018 - Opening of the Atelier des Lumières

2018

Opening of the Atelier des Lumières

After major renovations (roofing, insulation, etc.), the Atelier des Lumières opens its doors to the public on April 13. In the first year, 1.2 million visitors discover the Atelier des Lumières.

2018 - Opening of the Atelier des Lumières
2018 and beyond: major exhibitions

2018 and beyond

major exhibitions

Each year, Culturespaces organizes a long exhibition, a short exhibition and gives voice to artists in contemporary creations.

2018 and beyond: major exhibitions

4 exhibitions in 2018"Gustav Klimt" and "Hundertwasser, in the Wake of the Vienna Secession" by Gianfranco Iannuzzi, Renato Gatto and Massimiliano Siccardi, with the musical collaboration of Luca Longobardi, "POETIC_AI" by collectif Ouchhh and "Colours X Colours" by Thomas Blanchard and Oilhack.

2018 and beyond: major exhibitions

3 exhibitions in 2019 "Van Gogh, the Starry Night " by Gianfranco Iannuzzi, Renato Gatto and Massimiliano Siccardi, with the musical collaboration of Luca Longobardi, "Dreamed Japan, Images of the Floating World" by Danny Rose and "Verse" by Thomas Vanz.