With its brilliant light and exquisite villages, it’s no wonder so many great artists have been drawn to the French Riviera. Renoir and Monet were there first, followed by Picasso, Matisse, Chagall and a whole host of amateurs and professionals.
Now an official Painters of the Cote d’Azur itinerary is helping art-lovers follow their trail. The route starts in Antibes-Juan-les-Pins, described by Graham Greene as “the only town on the Riviera that has known how to keep its soul.” Perhaps that’s because charming yet frenetic Juan-les-Pins is balanced by the working harbour town of Antibes just a stroll round the headland from the beautiful pinede – pinewood – that spills onto Juan’s easternmost beaches.
Monet stayed at the Chateau de la Pinede in 1888, painting 36 canvasses in Antibes. Picasso and Matisse followed in the roaring twenties, just as the resort was being discovered by Hemingway, Greene and Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. Bonnard, Chagall and the surrealist Man Ray were here too.
A place like this deserves only the best travel cameras so that you can capture the city in all its glory!