Mohamed Mahmoud Khalil Museum
Sunday، 15 May 2016 - 12:00 AM
The palace of Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil and his wife was built in 1915. Its eastern side overlooks the Nile and features the French art style of Arnoveau, which manifests itself in the metal and glass work at the entrance of the palace. The building's western side bears the features of the neo-classic style, a blend of different ornaments. The huge mullioned window at the north side is particularly impressive. Visitors standing on the first and second floors can see the window, which is above the inner stairs and bears the signature of French artist Lucien Mette (Paris-1970).
The ground, first and second floors of the palace are used as the museum's gallery; the basement houses the administrative offices, the Library, the Information Centre and a big lecture theatre. The palace was the residence of Mohammed Khalil's family and the seat of his invaluable art collection until 1960. In accordance with the will drawn up by the wife of Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil the palace was inaugurated as a museum on 23rd July 1962 bearing the name of Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil and his wife Emiline Lock.
The museum's assets include masterpieces of great artists who extensively contributed to the movements of fine art in Europe in general and France in particular in the 19th century. However, the majority of the museum's 208 works feature the impressionist school, which laid the ground for the fine art movement in the 20th century. The great artists represented among the assets of Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil and his Wife Museum include Paul Gauguin, Auguste Renoir, Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, John Jongkind and Charles Francois Daubigny. The museum's assets also include masterpieces of oriental artists such as Eugene Fromentin.
The museum also exhibits priceless collection of vases made in France, China, Japan and Iran, and a big collection of elaborately-made miniature works of art by Chinese artists in precious stones, crystal de Roch, emerald and coral. The museum's exhibits also include large-size bronze, marble and gypsum statues by great sculptors of the 19th century such as Auguste Rodin, Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux, Louis Antoine Barye and Charles Cordier. Moreover, the museum's exhibits include a rare collection of small boxes bearing the Japanese style.An ardent lover of art Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil was also a statesman, a cabinet minister and Speaker of the Senate. He played a big role in enriching the cultural movement in Egypt by sponsoring the movement of fine art after he co-established and chaired the Society of Lovers of Fine Arts in 1924. Mohammed Mahmoud Khalil also helped to enhance the cultural exchange between Egypt and France in the first half of the 20th century. His efforts and dedication were acknowledged when he was awarded the most prestigious French medals and awards.