Villa St. Tropez
 

Saint-Tropez Museums

  

The Annonciade Museum

The Annonciade Museum is an extremely brillant reminder that the village of Saint-Tropez was one of the most active centres of the pictorial avant-garde of the beginning of the 20th century, thanks to Paul Signac who, in 1892, discovered the little fisshing port while sailing his yacht Olympia, Charmed by the area, Signac bought a home there which became his studio, La Hune and to which be invited many artists: Gross, Matisse, Derain, Marquet. The collections displayed, which were introduced between 1890 and 1950, are surprising, as much by their quality as by their homogeneity. These works are made up of first-class paintings, belonging essentially to the pointillist, nabist and fauyist periods.

 Maison des papillons

This museum was created by Dany Lartigue, son of the famous photographer Jacques-Henri Lartigue, and grand son of Andre Messager, member of the French Academy, manager of the Paris Opera and intimate friend of Faure and Debussy. The butterflies are presented in their former family residence, now the property of the Town of Saint-Tropez. In this typical Tropezian home, a fabulous selection of all the French diurnal species is on show. They have been assembled by Dany Lartigue over the past decades, and augmented by private donations.

Citadelle

The Citadelle of Saint-Tropez is a typical example of military engineering which the army of the time found difficult, if not impossible, to use effectively. This, in addition to the inadequate number of troops in garrison, encouraged the people of Saint-Tropez to prefer self-defence, i.e. to continue arming and training their own militia. Right from the beginning, the civilians of Saint-Tropez were in two minds about the construction of the Citadelle. Admittedly the garrison was there to protect the population, but its statute was ambiguous since on occasion it spied upon them, and sometimes even fomented discord and revolt. Representing the distant authority of the royalty, the garrison was perceived as superfluous and foreign of the town and its citizens, who were in all circumstances totally loyal to the king.

It is important to note that the demographic structure of Saint-Tropez in the 17th and 18th centuries was unusual: the great majority of the male population was made up of sailors. These men spent a lot of time at sea, in the merchant or royal navies, and were inveterate fighters.

Almost all of them kept arms at their homes, as is attested by inventories: here a blunderbuss, here a cutlass, here a halberd. If the King would agree to let them use his artillery, then they were ready to fight alone. In 1637 they resisted the marauding Spanish galleys.

In 1596 and 1652, they recaptured the fortress from renegades. Again in 1652 a mere 200 of them repulsed the Fronde forces dispached from Toulon. No doubt they were assisted here and there by royal troops, by the winds, by the divine intervention of their Patron Saint!

But It is their history, and the glory of it belongs to them.

Informations from saint-tropez tourism office. www.ot-saint-tropez.com