Marcel Proust wrote what can rightly be called a pictorial novel, so there are lots of visual aides to better comprehend his work. The Swann Hotel has carefully selected the best of these visuals, such as paintings done by the author’s friends, like Paul-César Helleu, or works by his favourite artists like Chardin and Rembrandt.
Each room is decorated with an original watercolour by artist Jean Aubertin, inspired by descriptions of the characters or by a canvas mentioned in the novel. For example, in the Octave chamber, there is a superb painting by JacquesEmile Blanche representing Jean Cocteau, since this was Proust’s real-life inspiration in creating Octave.
The Bloch chamber features the Portrait of Mehmet II by Bellini because Proust compares them in his description, and the Baron de Charlus chamber is adorned with the portrait of Robert de Montesquiou by Boldini, as Proust’s Charlus was widely inspired by the subject of the painting.
I keep on reading…