Suggestion: Schubert, Piano Trio N° 2, op. 11, D. 929, Andante con moto (1827)

The Virtual Wine Museum has been awarded by OIV ( International Organisation of Vine and Wine) with a Special Mention in their Fine Arts category

The ‘Muses’ companion since Antiquity, wine has been represented through many different art forms, such as literature, music and photography, as well as architecture, decorative and fine arts. Wine seems to have been a particular source of fascination for painters.

The Virtual Wine Museum, Vine and Wine across the arts, 1 300 works - Pierre-Auguste Renoir - Luncheon of the Boating Party - Phillips Collection

LUNCHEON OF THE BOATING PARTY

Auguste Renoir (1841-1919)

1880-1881

The Phillips Collection, Washington DC

Wine takes centre stage in this painting by Renoir. Placed at the heart of the action, wine plays an active role and contributes to the painting’s happy, serene atmosphere.  The people in the painting are shown as happy to be together and enjoying the delights of friendship. Duncan Phillips describes this work as “overflowing with contagious good humour”.

Artists, especially painters, have always acted as commentators. Vine and wine have been part of our social, cultural, religious, political and economic history throughout the ages. By telling their history, these artists help us better understand our own.

 

>>  A THEMATIC TOUR: 5 PERMANENT COLLECTIONS, 33 PAINTING GALLERIES

While painting – canvases, frescoes and illuminations – takes centre-stage, the Virtual Wine Museum also exhibits many other art forms. It’s the museum of the “Wine of the Arts”, telling great history of vine and wine from Antiquity to the present day.

 
  Focus: a look, a work

 
  Wine and Painting

Let us suggest the following route around the museum: Wine and the Arts to whet your appetite, the Focus: a look, a work to awaken your senses and the Gallery Collections to taste at your leisure or by following the guided tour below and at the bottom of the page. If you are pressed for time, why not take a quick trip around The Virtual Wine Museum’s selected highlights?

 

Take a quick tour of 30 selected works  >>

"Les Frères Clarke et d'autres gentlemen prenant du vin", Gawen Hamilton, entre 1730 et 1735 - Yale University, New Hawen, CT, US | MVV Le Musée Virtuel du Vin
Wine-drinkers | The Virtual Wine Museum, Accross the Arts

Wine-drinkers, Painters bear witness

Wine-drinkers have been portrayed by every kind of artist, and by great masters as well as more minor painters. One of these painters, Manet (who played a significant role in the representation of wine in art) believed that art should reflect life. Wine, when represented on canvas, is no exception to this rule. 
 
Such images are documentary, journalistic: they tell us the role played by wine in all walks of life, without exceptions. Daily life, social life, drunkenness and savoir-boire. Wine has been used as a social marker...
(video: click on the icon)

THE BROTHERS CLARKE WITH OTHER GENTLEMEN TAKING WINE

Gawen Hamilton, between 1730 and 1735 - Yale University, New Haven, CT, US

A BAR AT THE FOLIES-BERGÈRE (UN BAR AUX FOLIES-BERGÈRE) Edouard Manet, 1881/1882 - Courtauld Institute, London

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A new perspective on the knowledge of wine 

This site was originally developed as part of a university project based around the creation of a virtual wine museum dedicated primarily to the medium of painting. The objective was to show how, and according to which themes, artists have treated wine and the vine. Like physical museums, virtual museums aim to promote culture and to make it accessible for everyone.

André Malraux’s ‘imaginary museum’ or ‘the museum without walls’ (as it is often translated)* is closer than ever before, thanks to new technological formats : Malraux' imaginary museum has become a virtual museum  >>. The Virtual Wine Museum shares Malraux’s vision and offers a new perspective on the knowledge of wine and its history, especially social history.

The museum’s creator, Eric Beau, is a member of the UNESCO network 'Chair Culture and Traditions of Wine', Dijon. After having spent many years amidst the vines of the Côte de Beaune in Burgundy, he now lives in Bordeaux. He lectures at the University of Burgundy and in Bordeaux region.

The Virtual Wine Museum is in accordance with the definition of a museum by ICOM (International Council of Museums): 'A museum is a non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society and its development, open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment.'

The Virtual Wine Museum has been awarded by OIV ( International Organisation of Vine and Wine) with a Special Mention in their Fine Arts category

The Virtual Wine Museum is a recognized reference site. It has been selected in 2020 by the jury of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV), who have awarded it a Special Mention in their Fine Arts category. The museum is also a member of the international network of partners of the UNESCO Chair on “Wine Culture and Traditions” at the University of Burgundy.

The Virtual Wine Museum is a non-profit venture. Open to all, it aims to be an international point of reference, both a historical and educational goldmine for enthusiasts and students, and an accessible, easy-to-understand site for the general public. Georges-Henri Riviere, founder and creator of the Beaune Wine Museum and the National Museum of Folk Art and Tradition, liked to say that 'the importance of a museum cannot be measured in terms of visitor numbers, but by the number of visitors who have learned something there.' Not to mention the number of visitors who come back. For virtual museums, this is truer than ever. We hope that you enjoy your visit.

Focus: a look, a work

An ally to seduction - Women drinking wine are an essential incarnation of vice in the work of Vermeer. The artist elegantly portrays the private lives of silent, timeless women in a movingly naturalistic way. He would dedicate seven of his thirty-five known works to the negative effects of wine. In this image, wine is clearly represented as an instrument of seduction. The man hopes that the wine will act as an aphrodisiac, lifting the young woman's inhibitions and laying the groundwork for more intimate pleasures. The woman has just drained the glass of wine and the man seems impatient to pour her more, almost as if he is trying to get her drunk. A musical instrument, the cittern, lies on the chair with musical notebooks. But the figure of Temperance is depicted in the stained glass window, adding to the tension in the scene. The symbol, directly in the seated woman's eye line, is intended as a warning.

Focus: a look, a work  >>

Exhibition Eugène Atget, Wine in 'Vieux Paris'

Eugène Atget takes us on a stroll around “Vieux Paris”. Wandering from neighbourhood to neighbourhood, we’re on the hunt for wine merchants, bars, cabarets, cafés and restaurants – like this bougnat's shop (Auvergnat living in Paris), where wines and liquors jostle firewood and sacks of coal. Atget’s obstinate desire to lay reality bare makes him the grandfather of modern photography.
Still on display: the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam accompanies our display of Persian miniatures. Wine, frequently mentioned in Khayyam’s verses, is presented as a cure for melancholy and even the elixir of life. Two other exhibitions focus on art of today. Burgundy-based abstract painter Bertrand Sallard gives us his take on the tasks of the “vine to wine” process dictated by the seasons. Meanwhile, our Street Art exhibition shows Bacchus and wine taking over the urban landscape.

Exhibitions  >>

NEOLITHIC JAR RECOVERED FROM A NEOLITHIC SITE IN GEORGIA © Georgian National Museum

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BLOG: Wine, Art and Museum News (Fr.)

Scientists agree that vinification was first practised in the Caucuses, since the 19th century considered the homeland of vine cultivation. Georgia has confirmed its position as the birthplace of viticulture with some new archaeological discoveries. Winegrowing originated over 8,000 years ago, almost ten decades earlier than previously thought. Before the announcement, the earliest evidence of viticulture – dating from around 5,000 BC – had been found in Iran’s Zagros mountains. Residue found in eight large ceramic containers had been identified as wine by researchers from the University of Pennsylvania, the Georgian National Museum and the University of Toronto. This discovery is the earliest evidence of winemaking by humans to date.

Blog (Fr.) : Wine, Art, and Museum News | Works to know  >>

LAST PUBLISHED POSTS

DIONYSIAC ECTASY Roman sarcophagus, 2nd century, from Perga, ancient Greek city in Anatolia - Archaeological Museum, Antalya, Turkey

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What's new at The Virtual Wine Museum?

This scene of ecstasy depicts satyrs and Maenads, Bacchus’ usual companions. Satyrs are ambivalent creatures, part-man and part-stag, who live out in the wild. They make up the “Dionesic procession” accompanying the god and are associated with the Maenads, who follow on behind. The latter are not priestesses, but play an important role in religion and worship. They participate in the mysteries and festivals held in honour of the god. Personifying the orgiastic spirits of nature, they dance frenetically, plunging themselves into mystic ecstasy. The Bacchantes (the Roman name for the Maenads) were said to behave like ferocious beasts.  

 

Vine and the Wine in Sculpture  >>

RECENTLY ADDED

New works, restored works and works reproduced in better and accurate quality - 2nd Quarter, 2020

PEASANT KERMIS David Teniers the Younger ca. 1665 - Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

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PORT OF ROUEN, OFF-LOADING AND LOADING, WOOD (and Wine) Camille Pissarro, 1898 - Clark Institute, Williamstown, MA, United States

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TWO DRINKERS Honoré Daumier ca. 1858 - The Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia, PA, United States

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STILL LIFE After Pablo Picasso, Lithographie, 1923 - Musée national Picasso, Paris

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ARMENIAN AMBASSADORS OFFER WINE AND A HORSE TO THE PERSIAN EMPEROR, Relief, ca. 515 BC. - Apadana, Persepolis, Iran

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FEAST OF HEROD Giotto dit Bondone, 1320 - Capella Peruzzi, Santa Croce, Florence, Italy

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GRAPE HARVEST, Tapestry, Southern Netherlands, first quarter of the 16th century - National Museum of the Middle Ages, Paris

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SOIR BLEU Edward Hopper, 1914 - Whitney Museum, New York City

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TAPESTRY OF BAYEUX, PANEL 43: "AND HERE THE BISHOP BLESSES THE FOOD AND THE DRINK", 1066/82 - William The Conqueror Center, Bayeux, Normandy, France

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THE VINEYARD AT CAGNES Auguste Renoir, ca. 1908 - The Brooklyn Museum, New York

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VAUDEVILLE THEATER (ENGLISH DANCING COUPLE) Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, 1907 (1926) - Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

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WORKERS PRUNING THE VINES Auguste Chabaud

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THE SILVER GOBLET Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin ca. 1728 - Saint Louis Art Museum, St. Louis, Missouri, United States

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YOUTH POURING WINE IN DIONYSOS' KANTHAROS Tondo of a kylix, Greece, Attic clay, ca. 480 BC. - Musée du Louvre, Paris

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BOAT SCENE ON THE RHINE NEAR BINGEN (Germany) Johann Baptist Bachta, ca. 1840 - Museum am Strom, Bingen, Germany

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> Click on the icons for a closer look at the artworks

See more...  >>

1 - MARCH, MEN PRUNING From a manuscript commissioned by Edward IV, King of England, 1478/80 - British Library, London

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2022 Top Tweets: the most popular works*

Our tweets illustrated with miniatures easily take the lead. Images of miniatures and manuscripts certainly give us greater insight into life in the Middle Ages, especially in terms of the peasants’ labour over the course of the agricultural year. The iconographic theme of the calendar allows this to be depicted fully. In the 12th and 13th centuries, representations of the months featuring peasants at work figured in church décor, appearing on doorways, column heads and stained glass windows. It was also from this period that calendars began to adorn many liturgical texts. Although representations of work by month dwindled in the 14th and 15th centuries, appearing only on a few secular buildings, such images continued to decorate prayer books. By adopting pagan imagery already embedded in Greco-Roman Antiquity, the Church and its theologians gave a new sense to these scenes: that of Man, after the fall of Adam and Eve, suffering work as both a punishment and a means to redemption. 

 

Vine cultivation boomed in the Middle Ages. The liturgical and symbolic importance of wine to the Christian world, like that of bread, gave it a choice position in the culture’s iconography. The trimming of the vines in February or March, crucial for future production, is one of the most common motifs, especially in calendars.

Vine and wine in illumination  >>

 

The Virtual Wine Museum on Twitter  >>

* French edition and English edition together

2 - PRUNING, THE MONTH OF MARCH Heures de Catherine de Médicis, 1500?-1550? - BnF, Paris

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3 - SPRING Livre des propriétés des choses, 1480 - BnF, Paris

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4 - HARVEST IN CHATEAU D'HESDIN GARDENS Jean Mielot for the Duke Philippe le Bon, ca. 1460

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TOP TWEETS 2021

1 - THE HITTITE KING WARPALAWA OFFERING A BUNCH OF GRAPES TO THE GOD TARHUNTA Bas-relief in rock at Ivriz, in Turkey from the 2nd century BC.

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2 - VIEW OF THE CITY AND THE BRIDGE OF BORDEAUX FROM THE QUAI DE LA BASTIDE Aquatinte, Louis Garneray, ca. 1830?, aquatint

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3 - THE TEMPERATE AND THE INTEMPERATE Facta et dicta memorabilia, Valerius Maximus, Bruges, ca. 1475

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4 - VIEW OF THE PORT OF LA ROCHELLE Camille Corot, 1851

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5 - LIBRA ZODIAC SIGN, TREADING OF THE GRAPES West Rosace, Zodiac, 1220/25 - Notre-Dame de Paris

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6 - VIRGIN AND CHILD Joos van Cleve, ca. 1515/20

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7 - HARVESTING AND TREADING OF GRAPES Mosaic, 4th century

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8 - VIEW OF THE GARONNE RIVER (Bordeaux) Louis Garneray, ca. 1821/23

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9 - HARVEST, TREADING, AND TOPPING-UP Grandes Heures de Rohan, October, 1430/35

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2020 TOP TWEETS

1 - THE STATUE OF THE YOUNG BACCHUS Unknown Roman artist, First half of 1st century AD

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2 - DERVENI KRATER, ARIANE AND DIONYSOS ca. 330-320 BC.

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3 - MEN CELEBRATING GRAPE HARVEST 562 AD

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4 - BALL ON THE 14TH OF JULY Théophile Alexandre Steinlen, 1889

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5 - FEAST OF THE WINE (THE PROCESSION OF THE FATTED OX) Master of the Processions of the Ram, ca. 1650

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6 - THE VERY RICH HOURS OF THE DUKE OF BERRY, JANUARY Frères de Limbourg, 1412/16

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7 - TAPESTRY OF BAYEUX, PANEL 37: "HERE THEY DRAG A CART WITH WINE AND ARMS", 1066/82

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8 - CHRIST BENEATH THE WINEPRESS Ambrogio Bergognone (given to), 1528?

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9 - PANORAMIC VIEW OF TOURS IN 1787 Pierre-Antoine Demachy, ca. 1787

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2019 TOP TWEETS

1 - ARIES ZODIAC SIGN, MAN PRUNING HIS VINE West rosace, Zodiac, 1220/25 - Notre-Dame de Paris

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2 - THE FAMILY AFTER THE MEAL or THE GREEN DINNER Edouard Vuillard, 1891

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3 - FIELD OF THE CLOTH OF GOLD British School, 1545

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4 - VOTIVE RELIEF OF UR-NANSHE, KING OF LAGASH (detail) Early dynastic period III, ca. 2550- 2500 BC.

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5 - AUGUST Leandro Bassano, ca. 1595-1600

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6 - WINE IS A MOCKER Jan Steen, 1663/64

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7 - AT CAFE RICHE Jean-Louis Forain, 1894

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8 - THE WINE OF SAINT MARTIN'S DAY Pieter Brueghel the Elder, ca. 1565/68

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9 - DRUNKENNESS OF NOAH (after restoration) Giovanni Bellin, ca. 1515

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2018 TOP TWEETS

1 - PRUNING, THE MONTH OF MARCH Heures de Catherine de Médicis, 1500?-1550?

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2 - AUTUMN Francesco Bassano, ca. 1576

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3 - THE FESTIVAL OF THE OPENING OF THE VINTAGE AT MÂCON, FRANCE Joseph Mallord William Turner, 1803

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4 -THE TRUE VINE Unknown artist

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5 - THE BROTHERS CLARKE WITH OTHER GENTLEMEN TAKING WINE Gawen Hamilton, 1730/35

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6 - THE VINEYARD OF THE LORD Lucas Cranach the Younger, 1569

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7 - ALLEGORY OF MARCH: TRIUMPH OF MINERVA (lower layer detail) Francesco del Cossa, 1476/84

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8 - THE LAST SUPPER Cosimo Rosselli, 1480/82

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9 - CHRIST IN THE WINEPRESS 15th century

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