The Museum's Collections
A writer's house but above all a museum, the Maison de Victor Hugo hold more than 50,000 works of art. In Paris, there are paintings, drawings, sculptures, prints, photographs, objects, and even an entire library, as well as a collection of manuscripts and archives, all bearing witness to the life and work of Victor Hugo. On Guernsey, a whole house, decorated and furnished by Hugo himself, keeps alive the memory of his exile and creativity.
From the outset, the museum’s aim was to present a well-rounded account of the many facets of the man who was Victor Hugo. A writer whose work has inspired so many illustrations, he was also an artist, designer and decorator. His sons were photographers for a time. He and his family have preserved all the memories of his life. His success and popularity have inspired many works that pay tribute to him, and caricatures as well, that persist to the present day. It was his grandson Jean Hugo’s wish that the museum should become the repository for the poet's private and family memory. He laid the foundations with a collection of manuscripts, and over time the library has continued to grow with editions, research, archives, etc. These collections exceed the capacity of the museum, and most are too fragile to be exhibited permanently. Regular exhibitions and displays are organised to allow the public to discover these works. Furthermore, in order to share them more widely, the museum is actively pursuing a digitisation and automation policy to make the collections available online at parismuseescollections.paris.fr (The City of Paris website for online collections).