A block west of the gendarmerie is this fine museum, located on the site of Gauguin's last residence. It was opened in 2003 on the 100th anniversary of his death, so discount earlier reports about it not being open or not being very good. Start by watching a 2-minute video about Gauguin's life and then take plenty of time to see the reproductions of his paintings by the wife-and-husband team of Viera and Claude-Charles Farina (who could make an illegal fortune as forgers!). Instead of using old copra bags made of jute, as did Gauguin, the Farinas executed these stunningly accurate replicas on real canvas. The exhibition starts with his self-portraits and then follows chronologically. His French Polynesian works, therefore, are near the rear of the building.
Out back is a replica of Gauguin's last residence, which he called his Maison du Jouir (House of Pleasure) -- an apt name, apparently, since he painted Barbaric Tales, one of his best nudes, while living here.
Be sure to shop for Marquesan handicrafts in the boutique, which the center shares with Espace Jacques Brel .
- © Frommer's 2013
Ask a local about Tohua Papa Nui (Paul Gauguin Cultural Center)
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- Very Highly Recommended 2010
- 1 block west of gendarmerie
- Mon-Fri 8-11am and 2-5pm; Sat 8-11am
- No Sweat
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