"Napoleon and Paris, dreams of a capital".
Thierry Sarmant is the deputy director of the Carnavalet Museum and co-curator of "Napoléon et Paris, rêves d'une capitale". In this interview, he tells us about the exhibition at the Musée Carnavalet which explores the incredible program of urban transformation that Napoleon imposed on the capital of his Empire: on the one hand, the design and realisation of essential practical facilities (canals, fountains, bridges, docks, markets, slaughterhouses, cemeteries, granaries ...), and on the other, the monuments and other embellishments, a testament to the glory of the Imperial regime (the Vendome column, the two Arcs de Triomphe ... the sketched (but never realised) plans for the Palace of the King of Rome and the Imperial city ...)
“It was one of my greatest dreams to make Paris the true capital of Europe. Sometimes I wished it would become a city of two, three, four million people, something fabulous, colossal, hitherto unknown, and whose establishments would live up to the size of its population" (Napoleon, Memoirs of St. Helena).
This remarkable exhibition is on until August 30, 2015. (Interview by I. Delage, in May 2015).