Toulouse: here’s what you can see inside the dome of La Grave (and how it changed)

The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)

It is the cultural and heritage event of the new school year in Toulouse. The Saint-Joseph chapel in La Grave opens its doors to the public on the occasion of the European Heritage Days, Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 September 2022.

An emblematic monument that is open to the public

An emblematic monument of Toulouse, the chapel of “La Grave” has a rather recent history: its first stone was laid in 1758. The work, often interrupted, especially at the time of the Revolution, was completed in 1845. But this chapel is inseparable from the history of La Grave Hospital, which began in the 12th century.

Accessible free of charge during this weekend, the interior of the chapel will then be open to visitors all year round, on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and during school holidays, every day from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. for a fee of 4 euros (2 euros at reduced rate).

A “place of exhibitions”

“As a Toulousain, it’s an important moment! Because it is an emblematic monument of Toulouse, it is one of the best known symbols and even beyond here. It is a monument which had fallen almost into ruin, which was closed to the public and which had become dangerous to access. We restored it in two stages with a substantial budget (9.5 million euros, editor’s note) but the result is magnificent. It is a new cultural place which is opening up in Toulouse since we are making a place of exhibitions “, rejoices Jean-Luc Moudenc, the mayor of Toulouse.

The major works have made it possible to secure the building, renovate the dome, the exterior part and the chapel. But also the restoration of false marble wall decorations, paintings, sculptures, stained glass windows and furniture, the consolidation of frameworks, the recovery of vaults and ceilings, the upgrading of electricity, heating, ‘lighting…

Before / After, here is how the exterior of the monument has changed:

The dome of La Grave, before its renovation and after its renovation.
The dome of La Grave, before its renovation and after its renovation. (©Toulouse City Hall)
The exterior of Chapelle La Grave, before its renovation and after its renovation.
The exterior of Chapelle La Grave, before its renovation and after its renovation. (©Toulouse City Hall)
The entrance to La Grave Chapel, before and after the renovation.
The entrance to La Grave Chapel, before and after the renovation. (©Toulouse City Hall)
The entrance from the side of the courtyard, before and after the renovation.
The entrance from the side of the courtyard, before and after the renovation. (©Toulouse City Hall)
The roof before and after its renovation.
The roof before and after its renovation. (©Toulouse City Hall)

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Inside the chapel: the images

The inhabitants of Toulouse will therefore finally be able to discover the interior of this chapel.

The floors and painted decorations have been completely restored. To enlighten visitors, a museographic journey in twelve stages will allow you to know and understand the history of this symbolic building in Toulouse. Tactile tables, films or an exhibition of religious objects await Toulouse residents under the dome of the Saint-Joseph chapel.

Here are pictures of the interior of the chapel:

The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave.
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave.
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave.
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave.
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave.
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave.
The interior of the Chapel of Saint-Joseph in La Grave. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
Touch tablets allow you to learn more about the history of the chapel and the site of La Grave, through numerous testimonies.
Touch tablets allow you to learn more about the history of the chapel and the site of La Grave, through numerous testimonies. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)
Several scenographic arrangements have been made to welcome visitors.
Several scenographic arrangements have been made to welcome visitors. (©Gabriel Kenedi / News Toulouse)

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Toulouse: here’s what you can see inside the dome of La Grave (and how it changed)