The Médard Museum in Lunel manages the magnificent rare and precious book collections bequeathed by Louis Médard, a legendary 19th-century bibliophile. The institution today has some 5,000 ancient works, including some so licentious that Médard kept them double-locked in a cabinet, which he called his ‘Enfer'— his ‘Hell'.
De l'Enfer des femmes showcases these works with grace, erudition, and absolutely no censorship. Among the sulphurous books, prints, and engravings, all dedicated to libertinage, frivolous love, and romance, are an unexpurgated edition of Jean de La Fontaine fables replete with its original ‘unseemly' engravings, and semi-erotic prints by Jean-François Janinet (1752-1814). For those unmoved by such shenanigans, the museum is also exhibiting illustrations of doves, love birds, albatrosses, and swans from the 36-volume Histoire Naturelle by the famous 18th-century naturalist Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon.
De l'Enfer des femmes
71, place des Martyrs de la Résistance
Until 21 May 2016
Wednesday to Friday 2:00 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.