A DAY AT CHÂTEAU DE FONTAINEBLEAU
By Guillaume Picon Photography by Eric Sander
Whether you have visited Chateau de Fontainebleau or not, Flammarion’s book A Day at Chateau de Fontainebleau is a feast for the eyes and a worthwhile adventure, offering a rare view into areas of the château that guests could not personally access.
Nearly a thousand years have shaped this residence of French kings and emperors of every dynasty- Capetian, Valois, Bourbon, Bonaparte, and Orleans. Down the centuries, every passing era has left its mark on the details of this remarkable palace.
Imbued with over eight centuries of history, Fontainebleau—one of the few royal residences left intact in the wake of the French Revolution—offers unique historical insight into the lives of those who inhabited and enhanced this great architectural monument. A visit to the exceptionally well-preserved Fontainebleau offers unparalleled access to French history, art, and culture. From François I to Napoleon, from Marie Antoinette to Joséphine, A DAY AT CHÂTEAU DE FONTAINBLEAU by noted historian Guillaume Picon sweeps the reader back in time to experience the traditions and customs of great figures throughout the history of France.
“One of the most excellent buildings of France.” -Jacques Androuet du Cerceau, 1579
Comprised of more than 1,500 rooms on 130 acres of parkland and gardens, and situated 37 miles south of Paris, Fontainebleau welcomes more than 500,000 visitors a year. This book features superb images illustrating the artisanal decorative details of the château and the spectacular works of art still housed within; it includes exclusive access to archival documents and numerous rooms and galleries that are rarely open to the general public, Napoléon III’s office, Marie Antoinette’s Turkish-style boudoir, Madame de Maintenon’s apartments, the Imperial Theatre, and the medieval keep. Exquisite photographs by Eric Sander trace how the French ruling dynasties— Capétiens, Valois, Bourbons, Bonaparte, and Orléans—left their mark on this historical estate. François I’s Cour Ovale, Henri IV’s Gallery of Stages, the Salle de Collonnes, Diana Gallery, and many rare objects from the impeccably well-preserved collection bring to life the splendors of this exquisite French landmark.
“I know of no palace that can match Fontainebleau for such solemnities: from the first moment it stamps them with tremendous character; so many kings, so many centuries have laid their hands and left their mark upon it that, when today history is made there, it is made in the presence of this great sweep of past history.” -Francois Guizot, Statesman and Historian, in his memoires, 1861
The stunning photography by Eric Sandler in this book offers rare access to parts of the chateau usually closed to the public, including the Napoléon III’s office, Marie Antoinette’s Turkish-style boudoir, Madame de Maintenon’s apartments, the Imperial Theater, the medieval keep, François Ist’s Cour Ovale, Henri IV’s Gallery of Stags, the Salle des Colonnes, Diana Gallery, and many rare objects from the impeccably well-preserved monument.
Napoleon preferred Fontainebleau to Versailles, which he found to be too much the vision of one man, too grandiloquent. He preferred the legacy of its centuries of history.
From hunting excursions to the grand parties and spectacles that took place at Fontainebleau, this superbly illustrated, beautifully packaged volume is an invitation inside to the public and private sides of the UNESCO World Heritage site that is one of France’s most beautiful historical treasures. Order your copy here.
© A Day at Château de Fontainebleau by Guillume Picon, Flammarion, 2016, photographs © Eric Sander. No images may be used, in print or electronically, without written consent from the publisher.