Château - Arsenal
Phone: +33 (0)3 28 51 81 00
Fax: +33 (0)3 28 51 81 01

Musée Du Dessin Et De L'Estampe Originale, Gravelines

Created in 1982, le Musée du Dessin et de l’Estampe Originale is the only French museum dedicated to original prints, defined as a print entirely created by the artist and carrying their signature. The museum presents prints fro, the fifteenth century to the present day. Its specificity assures its place of distinction in the European art scene.
The museum is a product of the efforts of the Nord artists group, the Gravelines group, and the local political authorities. The Gravelines group, founded in 1960, raises awareness of Gravelines’ role as inspiration of artists such as Delacroix, Bonnington, Seurat, Signac, Derrain and Stael, for its particular and seductive light, and organises an exhibition on this theme every two years. The success of these exhibitions led directly to the creation of the museum, and its inauguration in 1982.

 Permanent Collection Highlights (4)

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Permanent Collection

The museum is spread over four rooms, situated in the military buildings of the town’s castle.
Built in 1742, this two-story room presents the permanent exhibition of the history of printing (tools, printing press, major figures), and a space reserved for temporary exhibitions, presenting the work of contemporary artists.

This room is within the castle’s rampart, and dedicated to the history and patrimony of Gravelines., and presents a relief-plan of the town.

Located in the tower to the left of the museum entrance, this ancient artillery room became a bakery in 1693.

Located in the tower to the right of the entrance, this room houses the reserves of the museum collection. These works can be viewed by appointment with the museum curator.
The museum operates a dynamic policy of acquisition, through purchases, donations and deposits. The collection contains 6500 prints and 1500 maps, books and photographs. This includes :
l'Apocalypse by Dürer (1471-1528)
Balzac’s masterpiece, illustrated by Picasso (1881-1973)
Books with illustrations and Lithographs by Wifredo Lam (1902-1982)
The complete engravings by Marcel Gromaire (1892-1971)
Works by Josephe Hecht, Jean-Emile Laboureur, Henry Lhotellier, Eugene Leroy, Philippe Favier and Armans.

Gravelines’ eighteenth century relief plan has been exhibited since 1995, when it was donated to the museum. Since them, the department dedicated to exhibiting the town’s history and patrimony has been in place. The relief dates fro, 1756/58, is in the scale of 1:600 and measures 4.6m x 3.7m.+ [ Read all ]


The museum curates temporary exhibition in close collaboration with other European institutions. In addition, it publishes literature and catalogues on exhibition occasions and presents comprehensive explanatory displays. Thus, the museum exhibitions operate under the title “exhbition – documents


2 euros, free to children and students

free tours for all public on the first sunday of the month

Opening hours

Open every day except Tuesdays.
Summer hours (until august 30) 2pm-6pm, weekends 10am-12pm, 3pm-6pm
From September, open 2pm-5pm, weekends 3pm-6pm
Closed January 1 and May 1

Museum internal and external photos (6)

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Guided tours available, please call : 03 28 24 99 72

Groups can consist of 10 -30 people, tours last between one hour and one and a half hours.
Cost 1 euro plus museum entry price.

Available Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, from 9am-12pm and 2pm - 5pm, with prior reservation


Childrens workshops and activties organised, please call the museum for dates and booking.


Tours and workshops available, please call the museum for dates and booking.