Galerie Émile Guimet

Émile Guimet Gallery

Permanent course

Opened in September 2021, the Émile Guimet Gallery pays tribute to the donors of the Musée des Confluences since its origins.

With its permanent exhibition, the museum tells the story of the origins of life and the adventure of humanity. With the Galerie Émile Guimet, the collection is revealed in all its diversity from the perspective of its donors.

By means of a selection of 250 exceptional objects and specimens from donations or bequests, the Émile Guimet Gallery bears witness to both the life stories of the collectors and the collective memory the museum contains. The composition of the showcases, like miniature theatres, reveals the aesthetic qualities of the pieces presented.

Eighty donors are paid tribute to through objects that reveal a vision, a thrill of discovery, a thirst for knowledge and a desire to share. Everything here stems from scientific passion, a taste for travel, artistic happiness, a wealth of encounters and constant dialogue.

The Émile Guimet Gallery is supported by the museum's endowment fund.

The exhibition route


Why such a space dedicated to donors?

“Nearly 70% of our collections come from donations. The Émile Guimet Gallery therefore presents the entire history of the Musée des Confluences, from its origins to the most recent donations. The museum continues to attract the interest of many donors, both collectors and scientists. The Galerie begins with a “pass on and share” showcase, the name of which sums up the vision behind the choice of these women and men: to make their work known to as many people as possible, and to enable the conservation, study and presentation of these unique collections."
Hélène Lafont-Couturier, General Director of the Musée des Confluences

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Galerie Émile Guimet

Émile Guimet

That the space is named after Émile Guimet (1836-1918) needs no explanation. An industrialist from Lyon with a passion for exploring the four corners of the world, Guimet was a great traveller with infinite curiosity and a man of culture who questioned myths and beliefs. He lent his name to the creation of museums and was always keen to present and subsequently bequeath collections that would be assembled gradually, in which Asia held a privileged place.

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Galerie Émile Guimet

From a private collection to a public collection

The objects and specimens gathered in the Émile Guimet Gallery bear witness to the many donations and bequests that have marked the history of the Musée des Confluences. For the women and men who have selected and collected them, these objects are part of a larger whole – a collection. This collection is the result of passionate research and long-term work that conveys a personal vision of the world. Once passed on to the museum, it continues to be enriched: each piece contained in the collection can be studied by researchers and then discovered by museum visitors.

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Galerie Émile Guimet
Continue the visit

Origins, stories of the World

Exposition Origines, les récits du monde