Espallion.  Space-focused renovation project!

Espallion. Space-focused renovation project!

As part of the scientific and cultural project of the Diving Museum, the city has just organized a weekend dedicated to space.

It started with a reception Saturday at City Hall where Mayor Eric Pickard welcomed various dignitaries.

The first museum in Europe dedicated to diving, the Espalion Museum collects more than 400 objects and documents that trace the human conquest under the sea, in relation to other hostile, unbreathable environments such as mines or space. Created in 1980 on the initiative of Lucien Cabriolet, this museum pays tribute to the pioneering inventions of Benoît Rocaerol and the brothers Auguste and Louis Denayroz, born in Espallion… more than 200 kilometers from the sea!

This diving device was displayed at the Paris Universal Exhibition in 1867, where it won a gold medal. It inspired Jules Verne's creation of Captain Nemo in his novel “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.”

Museum renovation

Since 2021, the fate of the Diving Museum has been in the hands of the Espalion City Council, which is now the owner of the collections. Then the renovation process began, including the scientific and cultural project. The first step was entrusted to Muriel Piesek, historian, specialist and museum ambassador for 20 years, with support from the commission provided by the Multi-Museum Design Agency.

This project will serve as a roadmap for the renovation in which directions will be identified that will open up the museum's areas and perspectives, while developing a new journey and story for the visitor through its existing collections that will be enriched. What they have in common is human evolution in hostile environments, from mining to diving to space.

On March 5, the first meeting of the scientific committee charged with developing this project was held in Paris.

Last weekend, two of its members were received at Espalion, Jean-François Clervoix and Octave de Gaulle.

Museum promotion

Jean-François Clervoy, astronaut, Octave de Gaulle, space designer, and Irina Dyachuk, general director of the National Cosmonautics Museum of Ukraine, expressed their admiration for the idea. “This magical museum, with its history, its richness and its exceptional collections, is perhaps one of its kind in the world. It is a true anchor of this diving culture, and we are fortunate to be part of this adventure to showcase the museum.” For Muriel Pesek, who is responsible for starting the renovation process: “We are at an important moment in its existence when it becomes independent and makes the dream of space more real.”

Support from elected officials

Nicolas Bessière, President of the Municipal Community, Jean-Claude Anglard, Senator, and Stephane Mazard, Deputy, were happy to participate. “This new dimension, this new momentum, this new life for a museum that challenges itself and looks to the future.”

Veronique Ortet, Secretary General of the Governorate, confirmed this “The state supports this project, and it is a sign of the land, which represents, between tradition and modernity, a development in our history and heritage.”

Sylvie Lacan, cultural assistant, and the participants saluted Lucien Cabriolier, founder of the museum, for what he had provided. “His humility, passion and perseverance.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *