The genesis of the Collection VR D’AFFAUX

In the 18th century in Lyon, the noble families Affaux de Glattas and Cuzieu collected paints, chinas and sculptures in their mansions : Bellecour Place for Affaux, Sainte Hélène Street for Cuzieu.

In 1794, young Marquess Antoine-Gabriel d’Affaux de Glattas was sentenced to death by the Convention of the French Republic which had just besieged Lyon, then by simplicity and speed, was machine-gunned with twenty nine other companions in misfortune in the plain of Brotteaux by means of an effective cannonade of artillery. Meanwhile, his house of the Bellecour Place was dedicated to the demolition workers and its collections simply destroyed, plundered or scattered.

His brother-in-law Charles-Ovide de Cuzieu had more chance ! He survived these upheavals by leading a career of cavalry officer crossing all the political systems of this unstable time in France. Colonel and nevertheless big bibliophile, he parted in 1815 of his collection of books and old manuscripts during an auction which stood out in Lyon and the catalog of which was established by Raynal, the former curator of the library of Lyon from 1791 till 1795.

Love of the arts and the collections continued however with his 3 children.

Although trained at the French Military Academy (in Fontainebleau in this time, not still in Saint-Cyr) his son Charles-Robert de Cuzieu preferred painter's vocation in Lyon in the military career which he abandoned definitively in July, 1814. Activity more peaceful than those of the Weapons.

His second son Hector, also trained at the French Military Academy, surviving of the terrible military Campaign of Russia, having been taken prisoner by the Cossacks for 2 years in the russian steppes, devoted for his part to the theatrical writing once income in Lyon after the peace signed in Vienna (Austria). Activity also more peaceful than those of the Weapons...

His daughter Athénaïs and her son-in-law Jean-Etienne de Saint Thomas were passionate about the Antiquity.

Jean-Etienne was one of first inspectors of the new administration of historic monuments created by Prosper Mérimée, the famous French writer, and settled down to Roanne in the Department of Loire. In his death in 1875 during the inventory of its collections, we counted not less than antique 2000 pieces, among which 2 marble graves and 3 Egyptian mummies!

The main pieces of the collection were bequeathed to the Museum of the Fine Arts and Archaeology of Roanne. Other pieces also fell to the National Antiques Museum in Saint Germain en Laye (near Paris, France).

In the turning point of the 19th and 20th century, Clémentine and Barthélémy Dumas de Vaulx, descendants of Athénaïs and Jean-Etienne, were more sensitive to the modernity of the photography and the industrialization style, to the railroad model making, to the big society parties with their Parisian cousins, in the beautiful theatrical evenings of friend Edmond Rostand the theatrical writer (Cyrano de Bergerac) … They passed totally next to the pictorial revolutions of their contemporaries! Doubtless because of the charm and the sweetnesses of the upper classes.

At the same time, Laurent Adenot dared to get married twice and dedicated his life to the painting of the landscapes of his native Burgundy and of his holiday stay of the edges of the Mediterranean Sea (South France). Some of his oil joined the public collections and are preserved to the Museum of the Fine Arts of Beaune (Burgundy, France) and to the Museum Greuze of Tournus (also Burgundy, France).

As for colonel Emile Experton, graduate of Polytechnique Engineering School and artilleryman officer, he did not limit his expertise to the management of arsenals : he realized as well copies of Dutch masters (with talent and passion!) that he wrote in a way warrior, patriotic and passionate.

When artillery get involved in the science of the beautiful things... (smile!)

It is in memory of these families, that is immortalized the taste of the arts and the pleasure to collect through a new Collection in sync with his time and serving the general interest by its statutes of Fundation.

A Collection more particularly dedicated to my grandfather Antoine-Gabriel " charmingly fired " and tragically killed in a time of excess and intolerance as we do not wish to see again it any more.

Paris, November 28th, 2014
Virtual Reality of Arts