THE GOVERNOR’S HOUSE, NAJAC
Centre of Interpretation of Architecture and Heritage of the Bastide Towns of Rouergue
A la une
L’envers des images
Du 15 avril au 05 novembre 2023.
Maison du Gouverneur, Centre d’Interprétation de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine, Najac
Le Pays d’art et d’histoire des Bastides du Rouergue vous emmène en voyage au cœur des images. Du Moyen Age à nos jours, les images sont omniprésentes, sur les monuments religieux, les bâtiments publics ou les demeures civiles. Sculptées ou peintes, elles sont le reflet de la représentation du monde que se fait la société OU du statut social du commanditaire. Du simple motif ornemental à la transmission d’un message divin, l’exposition passe en revue les nombreuses représentations gravées ou peintes du territoire.
The Governor’s house
Located in the heart of the castral village of Najac, this medieval residence of wealthy merchants of the 13th and 15th centuries, completely renovated between 2017 and 2019, now houses the Centre of Interpretation of Architecture and Heritage (CIAP) of the Pays d’art et d’histoire des Bastides du Rouergue and offers breathtaking views of the royal fortress and the landscapes of Najac.
The permanent exhibition developing in this exceptional house aims to explain and highlight the rich heritage of the territory.
The CIAP also offers temporary exhibitions, conferences and events outside the walls in all the municipalities of le Pays d’art et d’histoire des Bastides du Rouergue (exploratory visits, meetings, site or workshop visits, etc.). It also welcomes schools throughout the year during visits or heritage workshops.
What is a ciap ?
A Centre d’Interprétation de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine (CIAP) is a local cultural establishment with the aim of making all audiences (young people, inhabitants and visitors) aware of the architecture and heritage of a country of art and history.
The visit of the Governor’s House – CIAP will allow you to discover the richness and diversity of the heritage of the Pays d’art et d’histoire and will give you the keys to understanding the history and evolution of this territory.
The scenographic itinerary combines films, sound documents evoking the history of the Governor’s House (Murmures de murs…) , tales, an interactive station, a game of giant goose, models of ancient objects.
Le Pays d’art et d’histoire des Bastides du Rouergue
Created in 1985, the label «Ville ou Pays d’art et d’histoire» is awarded, by the Minister of Culture, after the opinion of the National Council of Villes et Pays d’art et d’histoire, to municipalities or groups of municipalities that engage in a policy of awareness, the quality of the heritage, architecture and living environment.
The Department of Architecture and Heritage is responsible for implementing, in the six municipalities of the Pays d’art et d’histoire of the Bastides du Rouergue, the agreement signed in 1992 with the Ministry of Culture, proposing meetings throughout the year, animations, guided tours.
Pays d’art et d’histoire des Bastides du Rouergue
Association des Bastides du Rouergue
Heritage House/ Old Baths-Showers
Quai de la Sénéchaussée
Tél. +33 5 65 45 74 63 / +33 6 14 48 48 55
The architectural history of the Governor’s House begins in the 13th century, and incorporates the various additions from the 15th to the 18th centuries. Thus, upon arriving in the Governor’s House from the castle street, the visitor goes back in time from the 21st to the 13th century.
For its rehabilitation project, the simple and bare architecture of the Governor’s House, which has survived time and continues to impose itself by its volumes, has been respected, keeping the building untouched by any heavy and irredeemable intervention that would obscure its history.
The architectural construction leaves the walls «bare», devoid of modern elements (insulation, etc.), which allows us to keep a reading of the built heritage and to understand its constructive system.
The scenographic discourse, meanwhile, is twofold: it tells the story of the Bastides in their context, as well as that of the building.
The scenographic furniture is «mobile» as was the furniture of the Middle Ages, a period during which the lords travelled with their furniture.
Modern visual and sound scenographic tools, allow the walls of this building to tell you the stories of the past, the present, and an immersion in the history of the Rouergue.
THE bastides OF THE rouergue
Defended by a powerful fortress controlling the Aveyron valley, the village of Najac was one of the main towns of Rouergue during the medieval period.
Villefranche de Rouergue
Founded in 1252, the bastide was a city of power whose economy was flourishing, as evidenced by its urban scale and the quality of its architecture.
Overlooking the gorges of Aveyron and Lézert, along which were placed tilt hammers, intended to beat copper, is La Bastide-l’Évêque. This bastide was founded in 1280 by the bishop of Rodez in order to compete with Villefranche-de-Rouergue.
On the neighbouring plateaux, remains the sanctuary town (which is a town that built around a church) of Saint-Salvadou, which is a dependency of the Benedictine abbey of La Chaise-Dieu in the 11th century, as well as the former seigneurial fief of Vabre, which served as a refuge during the Hundred Years War.
Founded on a plateau of Ségala in the 13th century by the royal administration, the bastide is distinguished by a regular plan organized around a vast square lined with cutlery.
Founded shortly after the Year Mil by the Benedictine Abbey of Saint-Martial de Limoges, a sanctuary town of Rieupeyroux guaranteed its inhabitants an indispensable spiritual security in order to develop agricultural activities and economic exchanges.
As the gateway to the Causse, the small medieval town that combines a Romanesque-era sanctuary town with a 13th-century bastide was an important stop for pilgrims to Santiago de Compostela.
grands sites occitanie
The «Grands Sites de Midi-Pyrénées» brand was launched in July 2008 by the Midi-Pyrénées region. Following the merger of the Midi-Pyrénées region with Languedoc-Roussillon, the brand adapted to the new name of the region and became «Grands Sites Occitanie».
« Vos plus belles histoires naissent ici. »
The «Grand Site de Midi-Pyrénées» brand was launched in July 2008 by the Midi-Pyrénées Region. Following the merger of the Midi-Pyrénées region with Languedoc-Roussillon, the brand adapted to the new name of the region and became «Grand Site Occitanie».
Almost 85% of the tourists who visit the region pass through one of these Grand Sites. There are about 30 million tourists every year. The objective of the «Grand Site Occitanie » label is to promote the heritage, cultural, natural and historical sites of the region and to strengthen their tourist attractiveness. In this sense, investments are made for the enhancement of heritage, the quality of host infrastructure, and the preservation of the sites’ environment.
The appellation « Bastides et Gorges de l’Aveyron » includes the communes of Najac, Villefranche-de-Rouergue and Villeneuve. Since the beginning of 2019, Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val and Caylus have joined the scheme.
The Grands Sites Occitanie / Sud de France is a unique collection illustrating the best of our region around remarkable heritage, cultural, natural or historical riches.
From the Pyrenees to the Mediterranean, Occitanie reveals itself through the detour of 40 unmissable places, majestic, authentic, wild or legendary.