The Yellow Salon

Under the terms of a framed agreement signed on October 2013, the Heritage Foundation has made a commitment to support the Château de Fontainebleau in the restoration and improvement of its historic legacy. TheHertitage Foundation wishes to act in accordance with this partnership by providing €200,000 in sponsorship for the restoration of the ‘Salon Jaune de l’Impératrice’. This is most notably for the wall hangings, the carpet and the objects on display.

Yellow Salon in the small apartments at the Château de Fontainebleau

Made over in 1808, the Grand Salon in Empress Josephine’s private apartments are a sumptuous example of the interiors created under Napoleon I. The wall panels of this luxurious room are strewn with embroidered yellow silk and red palmettes, ornate scrolls, bees and musical symbols. It is considered the "pearl" of the Petits Appartements and one of the most beautiful of Empire interiors.
The fabrics have deteriorated greatly due to weather damage. Light exposure has caused strong discolouration to the fabric and the embroidered threading. In spite of this, the antique hanging is a precious example of Empress Josephine's taste in interior furnishings.

Thanks to the incredible sponsorship of the Historical Foundation, this unique piece of decorative art is getting a new lease of life thanks to its careful and innovative restoration process. After having ruled out the option of replacing the wall hanging with new silk in vivid shades, the authentic fabric from the First Empire has been preserved while restoring its shine.

The restoration team has decided to conduct a thorough dusting and reforming of the broken areas in conjunction with the castle’s heritage and collections management. A veil of dyed yellow silk was applied and printed in red in accordance with the contours of the patterns embroidered on the original silk. The transparency of the veil will not allow the original material to be visible, while at the same time enhancing its colours that have faded with time.

As for the furniture, it has been enhanced by restoring the gilded wood thanks to the support of the ‘Centre de Recherche et de Restauration des Musées de France’ (C2RMF). The armchairs and benches fabrics still need to be restored and are the subject of a survey.{.

Head of Works
Vincent COCHET, Chief of Conservation
Companies
Silk panelling: AGATHE STROUK
Carpet: CHEVALIER CONSERVATION
Vases: BEATRICE BEILLARD
Wood gilding C2RMF

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The castle

The castle is open every day except Tuesday, January 1st, May 1st and December 25th.
From October to March: 9:30 am to 5:00 pm (last access at 4:15 pm).
From April to September: 9.30 am to 6 pm (last access at 5.15 pm).

Wearing a mask is compulsory from the age of 11.

The tour is fully accessible, except for the Napoleon I and Chinese museums. As a compensation, the exit is through the Oval Court, exceptionally open for the occasion.

It is not necessary to reserve a visit slot for the castle or the gardens.

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