Visuel actualite

HORS-LES-MURS Scribbling - Scarabocchio, From Leonardo da Vinci to Cy Twombly

The exhibition unfolds in two unique and complementary parts, one in Rome, the other in Paris: the first presentation at the Villa Medici, from March 3 to May 22, 2022, will be followed by a second at the Beaux-Arts de Paris from february 19 to april 30, 2023.


Combining nearly 300 original works from the Renaissance to the contemporary period, the exhibition's two presentations shed light on one of the most repressed and least controlled aspects of drawing practice. By addressing the multiple facets of doodling, from the daubed sketch on the reverse side of paintings to the scribble as work, the exhibition reveals how these experimental, transgressive, regressive, or liberating graphic gestures, which seem to obey no laws, have from time immemorial punctuated the history of artistic creation.


The Renaissance, in order to break free from the constraints of what was later called "academic" drawing, indulged in free, instinctive, gestural graphic forms that evoke the rudimentary drawings of children, the calligraphic ramblings in the margins of manuscripts, or the graffiti of anonymous hands covering city walls. Picasso, referring to children, said: "It took me a lifetime to learn to draw like them"; Michelangelo, already, had fun imitating puppets clumsily graffitied on Florentine facades. The exhibition explores this hidden side of artistic work and invites visitors to shift their gaze to the reverse side of the paintings or the walls of the studio, to the margins of the drawings or under the decorations of the detached frescoes...


By proposing unprecedented comparisons between the works of the masters of early modernity - Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Pontormo, Titian, Bernini... - and those of major modern and contemporary artists - Picasso, Dubuffet, Henri Michaux, Helen Levitt, Cy Twombly, Basquiat, Luigi Pericle... - the exhibition blurs chronological classifications and traditional categories (margin and center, official and unofficial, classical and contemporary, work and document) and places the practice of doodling at the heart of artistic making.


The fruit of a long-term research project carried out by the curators, the exhibition, co-produced with the Beaux-Arts de Paris, is the result of a large-scale international coordination effort. It is supported by the Centre Pompidou in Paris as well as a partnership with the Istituto Centrale per la Grafica in Rome, a national institution dedicated to the graphic arts.



From Thursday, March 3, 2022 to Sunday, May 22, 2022
Monday to Sunday (closed on Tuesdays): 11am to 7pm (last entry at 6:30pm)

Académie de France à Rome - Villa Medici
. Viale della Trinità dei Monti, 1 00187 Roma


Find all the information about the ticketing by clicking on the following link: