The Bibliothèque Patrimoniale of Rouen organizes an exhibition of their most beautiful northern European drawings from 1500 to 1900. The exhibition features 85 drawings of which there are 75 completely unpublished and never shown in public. Most of drawings were bequeathed to the library by the collector Jules Hédou (1833-1905). Another significant number of sheets was acquired in 1838 by the French historian and bibliophile Constant Leber (1780-1859). Thirty of the exhibited drawings are of Dutch and Flemish origin, including works by Simon Bening, Joris Hoefnagel, Frederik van Valckenborch, Jan Muller, Jan van de Cappelle, Claes Moeyaert, Abraham van Diepenbeeck, Lodewijk de Deyster and Frans Boudewyns.
The 55 other drawings in the exhibition are by German and Central European artist such as Christoph Schwarz Michael Herr, Johann Baptist Zimmermann and Gottfried Bernhard Göz, by Maulbertsch, Reiner and Schmuzer. One of the most important discoveries made in preparation of the exhibition are thirteen new drawings by Michael Willmann about the life of Saint Joseph.
The exhibition is curated by David Mandrella. An exhibition catalogue, also written by Mandrella, will be published that discusses all 85 works presented in the exhibition. The catalogue will also include a list of the remaining 90 northern European drawings in the collection of Bibliothèque Patrimoniale.