The six-headed hydra invites you to a universe of magic and legend
On the facades of the House of Magic a six-headed monster, lady of the house, emerges from the windows every half hour and seems to inspect the entrance, as though to bid you welcome.
Imagined in 1998 by Michell and Jean-Pierre Hartmann, the 58-meter sculpture incarnates the audacity of a wish to confound dream and reality. Put your foot in the front door, and let yourself be carried away in a universe permeated with magic and legends.
An invitation to enter the universe of illusions
On five floors with a total area of 2,000 m², discover the history of magic, the life and work of the celebrated magician Robert-Houdin, novel exhibitions and optical illusions of all varieties. Replete with opportunities for discovery and family entertainment, the temple of magic will propel you from one surprise to the next.
Prepare for a knockout visual experience with the integrated mirror helmet imagined by Gérard Majax. Giant cards, marvelous orange trees, a harlequin automaton with its nuts and bolts, a hypnotic eye and oriental magic will throw you for a loop.
With no less than 170 objects, the Robert-Houdin collection illustrates the diversified talents of the inventor. Discover the sitting room, the office and the workshop of the celebrated magician as well as his residence near Blois, in Saint-Gervais.
Trunk with swords, posters, accessories… Discover an evocation of the oriental magic in vogue in the late 19th and early 20th century.
In a room reminding the visitor of a Greek temple, the automations conceived by Georges Proust recreate the evolution of magic in different epochs: the phony antique temple, the conjurers of the Middle Ages, Pinetti the physicist and Buatier de Kolta the inventor of genius.
Surrounded by mirrors, by inverted or topsy-turvy views, by misleading or unlimited perspectives and by secretive mysterious signs, in the room of illusions you will feel like a pawn on the chessboard of time.
The 2019 season
Curiosa, a magical spectacle
Immerse yourself in the mesmerizing nuts and bolts of a genius of the sciences and the arts, a certain Leonardo da Vinci. Following the footsteps of a young female intruder all but bursting with curiosity, the master’s workshop unveils itself in enigmatic chiaroscuro. Paintings, machineries, rampant and proliferating inventions … a captivating story, at once bizarre and poetic, unforgettably conveyed by a plethora of magical effects. Further information on the spectacle, which will continue through 22 September.
National conservatory of the magical arts and illusion
Hosted by the House of Magic, the national conservatory of the magical arts and illusion aims at being a conservatory of illusionism and a forum for exchange and transmission of knowledge involving persons practicing magic… and magicians themselves. From the outset, it has housed documentary collections on the arts of magic and illusion.
Focus on Jean-Eugène Robert-Houdin
Born in Blois on 7 December 1805, early in his life Robert-Houdin manifested a passion for mechanics by observing his father at work in his watchmaker’s workshop. During his apprenticeship in watchmaking, it was while mistakenly consulting an encyclopedic dictionary of amusements and sciences rather than a watchmaking treatise that he chanced upon … prestidigitation. A self-taught expert in applied sciences, he registered patents in a wide variety of fields and some of his inventions, such as the odometer, remain in use to this very day.
Some practical details
In 2019, the House of Magic is open until 22 September, and from 19 October to 3 November. The baseline price of an entrance ticket ranges from 6.5 to 10 euros. Combined tickets afford access to favorable prices, facilitating visits to other major cultural sites in Blois. Tickets can be purchased online. With the Pass, entrance for Blois citizens is free.