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The Petite Galerie at Musée du Louvre features an exhibition for 2017–2018 focuses on the connection between art and political power. Governing entails selfpresentation as a way of affirming authority, legitimacy and prestige. Thus art in the hands of patrons becomes a propaganda tool; but it can also be a vehicle for protest and subverting the established order. Evolution of the Codes Behind Representation of Political Power Spanning the period from antiquity up to our own time, forty works from the Musée du Louvre, the Musée National du Château de Pau, the Château de Versailles and the Musée des Beaux-arts de la Ville de Paris illustrate the evolution of the codes behind the representation of political power. The exhibition is divided into four sections: “Princely Roles”: The first room presents the king’s functions— priest, builder, warrior/protector—as portrayed through different artistic media. Notable examples are Philippe de Champaigne’s Louis XIII, Léonard…

Pastels are made from powdery substances that are fragile and subject to fading. In accordance with modern museum practice, they are exhibited in very low light or rotated to ensure their long-term preservation. This display is a temporary extension of the new installation in the adjoining galleries for European Old Master paintings. Absolutely stunning examples of this medium.  Such exquisite execution and all so beautifully preserved. Described by the great Salon critic and encyclopedist Dennis Diderot as no more than dust, pastel owes it distinctive velvety quality to its powdery surface, which reflects diffuse scattered light. Consisting of finely ground pigment and a white mineral extender moistened with a minute quantity of binder (such as oatmeal whey, mineral spirits, and gum tragacanth) rolled into sticks of color, pastels are made in a progression of tints and shades. Pastelists kept hundreds of such crayons on hand. The popularity of pastel—especially for…