Almost everyone knows the Black Cat of Montmartre. This popular poster image represents one of the most well-known French advertisements in the world, and countless souvenirs and other products have been created featuring this image.
Now, until June 2, 2013, visitors to Paris who want to discover the story behind this mythical black cat can do so at the Musée du Montmartre — the Montmartre Museum. The museum is currently running an exhibition entitled ‘Around the Black Cat’ (‘Autour du Chat Noir’). The exhibition comprises more than 200 works related to the neighborhood’s feline representative and the cabaret from which it originated.
This exhibition has already met great success. In fact, it has been running since September 2012 and was originally scheduled to close in January 2013. However, the Black Cat has been so popular, that the museum prolonged the exhibit until June of 2013.
As mentioned earlier, the Black Cat and its iconic poster actually come from a cabaret of the same name. The exhibition of the Musée du Montmartre takes visitors behind the scenes of this cabaret, which provided a stomping grounds for some of the most influential artists of the 19th and 20th centuries. As such, the local spot was a place where artists like Claude Debussy and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec often converged for conversation.
Guests staying at one of the Grands Hôtels Parisiens can take a little trip up to the 18th arrondissement in order to pay the Chat Noir a visit. The Montmartre neighborhood is a must-see for any visitor to Paris, and this exhibition will give visitors even greater insight into the culture and history that have shaped this quaint and influential area.
Although the Chat Noir cabaret disappeared in the 1920s, its artistic spirit lives on in Montmartre.