Currently | Like a picture: childhood in the 19th century in the Musée Goupil collections
20 June 2020 – 3 January 2021
The 19th century was when children became fully fledged members of society, constituting a public in their own right: books, magazines, toys and clothes were created specifically for them, and they became the preferred subject of many artists. The pictures reproduced and disseminated by art publisher Goupil show the status of children and the family at the time. For middle-class society, children meant above all the promise of social advancement: their success at school and at work would ensure the whole family climbed the social ladder.
The representations of childhood offer a faithful reflection of 19th-century realities, the little girls playing with dolls and tea sets, the little boys dressed up as soldiers. Comprised of around 80 prints, photographs and objects, the exhibition presents the period through the themes of early childhood and education, as well as child labour and economic circumstances. It also reflects on the place of children in 21st-century society.