Sorbonne University: A Unique Complex in the Heart of Paris
The presidency of Sorbonne University is located at the historic site of les Cordeliers in the heart of the Latin Quarter, which also houses scientific and medical research laboratories. Close by, the historic building of the Sorbonne is one of the locations for the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, which it shares with the Rectorat de Paris and other Parisian universities. Nearly 100,000 square meters are dedicated to the academic and research activities of Sorbonne University, in addition to other locations spread throughout the capital. The Faculty of Arts and Humanities, in fact, is divided between the Clignancourt, Malesherbes, Michelet and Sorbonne locations.
At the Place Jussieu, the Pierre and Marie Curie campus houses the majority of the laboratories and classrooms used by the Faculty of Sciences, in addition to libraries and student-dedicated spaces. With the 90-meter-high Zamansky Tower at its heart, this campus alone covers an area of 400,000 square meters. The Faculty’s locations are split between the Paris and the surround region and the three marine stations in Banyuls-sur-Mer, Roscoff and Villefranche-sur-Mer.
The Faculty of Medicine, on the other hand, is divided between the hospital locations of la Pitié-Salpêtrière, Saint-Antoine, Tenon, Trousseau, Charles Foix-Ivry and Rothschild.
Between Tradition and Modernity
The site of La Sorbonne includes, among other things, a chapel commissioned by Richelieu in the 17th century and endowed with a superb Baroque façade, as well as numerous salons, all classified as historical monuments. Over the last decade, numerous sites of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities have undergone renovation and redevelopment projects, in particular the completely-rebuilt Clignancourt location. The Pierre and Marie Curie campus has also benefitted from a wide-ranging renovation project that lasted more than 20 years and was completed in 2016. The architect Albert’s modular “Grill” design, so characteristic of this location, has now been modified to meet the needs of research, academics, and student life in a contemporary international university setting. Students, faculty and staff can now enjoy a campus with lush greenery that’s open to the city.
Sorbonne University also possesses a top-tier scientific heritage. Each faculty has its own treasures and archives: papyri that are thousands of years old are conserved at the Institute of Papyrology; the most important paleontological collection in France after the Louvre; one of the oldest mineral collections in France; and a zoological collection like nothing else in Paris. Finally, the remarkable collections of the Charcot Library preserve the first works of neurology dating back to the 19th century.
Works of Art
Showcase, “The future is a present given to us by the past”, quote by André Malraux on the Zamansky Tower.
Sorbonne University is also rich in terms of its collection of contemporary art. The Pierre and Marie Curie campus contains works by Calder, Steiner, Vasarely and even a mural by Gischia. These audacious works of art were acquired largely under the aegis of the 1% budget for art program promoted by then-Minister of Culture André Malraux.
Le site dédié au patrimoine artistique du campus Pierre et Marie Curie.