Brittany Ferries began their journey into the world of art in 1986 when they sought works for their new flagship, the Duc de Normandie. The Duc de Normandie was the first vessel that Brittany Ferries had sought to form its own identity, and with the help of Architectes Ingenierus Associes (AIA) they set the foundation for the design and decoration of all of their future ships.
The mv Bretagne was, the first custom build. Alexander Goudie was entrusted with the daunting task of decorating the entire vessel with his own works. He rose to the occasion magnificently, creating what is still widely acknowledged the best ferry operating out of the UK.
It was in January 2005 that Brittany Ferries carried out an inventory of the companies works of art, which are viewed by over one million passengers every year. A few weeks later a figure in excess of 1300 was recorded. 1300 original works of art, a true treasure trove, the result of commissions placed with artists both known an unknown during the previous 25 years. The works included paintings, sculptures, photographs and even articles of furniture - all of which, it could be said, create the body and soul of the ships on which they are displayed, and of the company itself.
Displays have been put on at the National Marine Museum in Paris, in Caen, St Pol de Leon and Santander, allowing those ashore to enjoy the Brittany Ferries experience, ashore. Entitled "Art is a journey", a collection of contemporary works of were put on display, celebrating over 25 years of Brittany Ferries supports in artistic creation in the tradition of the shipping companies.
Onboard the Pont-Aven Brittany Ferries have put together an art tour, describing the various works of art located throughout the vessel. Her interior designers worked closely with the artists commissioned to produce art for the ship to create surprise and emotion with the aim of showing Brittany as being a region both rich in legends and myths as well as being modern and dynamic which is the ship's theme. The name "Pont-Aven" is a desire to unite a Brittany rich in legends and myths to a modern dynamic Brittany. This is the ship's theme.
The tour is achieved by the use of an audio tour. You can download the audio tour below, for use on your own personal mp3 player, or you may hire one (free of charge) onboard by visiting reception. Additionally you can download the tour information leaflet:
Over 50 artists have signed the decoration of the Brittany Ferries fleet: paintings, sculptures, photographs, furniture design, each vessel has its own collection, theme, his artistic universe. A heritage that now numbers more than 1,300 original works of art!
Artists like Goudie, Zoritchak, and Viollet Dilasser participated alongside the architects to design and decoration of vessels. The Company offers to passengers, the cabin living room, a space of wonder and escape as a new "Art of life" traveling.
Artists who have participated in Brittany Ferries onboard design include:
Guy de Malherbe
Yvon Le Corre
René Le Bihan
Jean Pierre Le Bras