The Petit Palais is inaugurated on 11 December as the "Palais des Beaux-Arts de la Ville de Paris". It presents the collections of paintings and sculptures acquired by the City of Paris since 1870 either as commissions or bought directly from artists or at Salons. This ensemble of French art from the late 19th and early 20th centuries constitutes one of the major poles of today's collection.
The second pole is formed by the collection of pre-modern art bequeathed in 1902 by the brothers Auguste and Eugène Dutuit, reflecting the 19th-century passion for European history and its curiosity about other civilisations. Eugène (1807-1886) aud Auguste (1812-1902) Dutuit received a classical education, which shaped thier taste for arts. As adolescents, with their sister Héloïse (1810-1874), they decided to use the fortune from their father, a merchant, to put together a massive collection. Their bequest includes an impressive number of ancient (Greek and Roman) works, art objects from the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Flemish and Dutch paintings from the 17th century, manuscripts and books from the 15th to 17th century, with 12,000 engravings, including complete sets of Rembrandt, Dürer and Callot, as well as Isalmic, Chinese, Japanese artworks. To this ensemble is added the fruit of the back interest (on the Parisian building also left by the Dutuits), which make it possible to regularly enrich the collection of pre-modern art.
1904 Georges Hoentschel gift : 200 sculptures and ceramics by Carriès.
1905 Jean-Jacques Henner and Félix Ziem bequests.
1906 Donation of eight paintings by Gustave Courbet, from his sister Juliette.
1916 Jacques Zoubaloff donation of paintings and drawings by Redon and Harpignies, sculptures by Barye and Maillol and art objects by Husson and Cros.
1938 Donation of sculptures by Carpeaux, from his daughter.
1945 Bequest by Ambroise Vollard of paintings by Cézanne, Renoir and Bonnard.
1967 Donation by Jacques Soustiel of some twenty fragments of Carriès' Monumental Door.
1979 Donation of 50 paintings by Brokman, from his son.
Donation by the daughters of Charles Jacqueau, a designer for Louis Cartier, of several thousand drawings of jewellery.
1998-1999 Paul Landowski (1875-1961) is one of the most ubiquitous sculptors on the Parisian landscape (Saint Genevieve on the Pont de la Tournelle, Cain and his sons in the Tuileries Gardens, The fountains at the Porte de Saint-Cloud, etc.). On the occasion of an exhibition staged at the Petit Palais devoted to his major project the Temple of Man, his descendents donated two sculptures and approximately two hundred drawings in 1998 and 1999.
2002, 2004, 2007 and 2009 A collaborator with Alfred Roll on the monumental decoration of Paris City Hall, Ernest Renoux (1863-1932) was essentially an open-air painter. His daughter-in-law donated a sketchbook, paintings and tools which had belonged to this retiring artist.