Day Tour

Centre Pompidou Centre Pompidou (2 Hours)

Context Travel

Paris, France

Valid for Travel Now Through: 22 Mar 2019

Centre Pompidou Centre Pompidou (2 Hours )

Paris, France

Tour Features


  • Culture, History & Arts
  • Sightseeing



Recommended Ages

12 and Above

Activity Level



The Centre Pompidou, home to Europe's largest collection of 20th century art, is one of the most-visited museums in the world. The building itself is not only home to this important modern art museum, but also contains a library, bookstore, a cinema, and a famous restaurant. This two-hour walk will focus on the museum as a site of contemporary pilgrimage and urban renewal, and on the related history of the Parisian avant-garde. It is ideal for those interested in modern art or anyone wishing to better understand 20th century art.

We will start at the Place George Pompidou, with a brief discussion of the notorious building, designed by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, in which the functioning of the museum is made visible, as if the structure had been turned inside-out. All the functioning parts of the building (elevators, water ducts, air pipes) are on the exterior of the building, and are color-coded: blue for air, green for water, red for elevators, yellow for electricity, gray for corridors and white for the building itself.

We continue on to the permanent collection, which is located on the top two floors. We will explore the cubist canvases of Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, which launched all subsequent avant-garde movements, and move on to Fernand Léger, Henri Matisse, and Piet Mondrian, all of whom reacted to and developed out of cubism. We will look at Francis Picabia as the primary exemplar of the Parisian strain of the international Dada movement, and at Dada's Parisian successor Surrealism, which is amply represented throughout the Centre Pompidou. We will return to Picasso, who was a fellow-follower of the surrealists in the 1930s.

The walk concludes with a brief examination of some postwar trends and a look at some of the more recent works, which will afford us the opportunity to question the avant-garde's contemporary legacy.

About Us

The Context vision is to create an atmosphere—a context, if you will—for curious travelers to engage with local experts; to give them access to places and cultures that might otherwise remain out of sight to the casual visitor; to invite them off the tourist track and into the real life of the people, history, and heritage that make these cultural capitals amazing. With no more than six people, you'll participate in an intimate, hands-on, conversational experience. No Tour Guides - Our docents are first and foremost scholars or specialists, with MAs, Ph.D.s, or other terminal degrees in their fields of study.

Insider Tip

Contact your Virtuoso Travel Advisor for insider knowledge to help enhance your experience.

Terms & Conditions

Context walks can be cancelled up to 48 hours prior to the walk with an 85% refund. Within 48 hours all reservations are final and cannot be refunded. Walks are held rain or shine with some variations to accommodate the weather. If you are running late for your meeting with our docent, we ask that you call to alert us so that we can relay the message to the docent. No shows are treated as last-minute cancellations and are non-refundable. Cancellations within three business days need to be made by phone to the emergency number provided in your confirmation email. Cancellations within three business days made via email or by calling our U.S. 800 number may not be honored. Other terms and conditions may apply.

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Italy trip

By: Joe C

Reviewed on: 27 Jun 2018

Without question they did a superb job.
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"The Great European Tour"

By: MJ

Reviewed on: 14 Aug 2018

The trip was our first experience with Context and it was amazing!
Travel Advisor:  Donna Peacock
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By: Shari

Reviewed on: 17 Nov 2018

The 6 person maximum of Context tours really made for an intimate learning experience. The docents they get to lead the groups were top notch!
Travel Advisor:  Kelly Millington