The graphic arts department of the Dobrée museum has more than 10,000 pieces including original works (drawings) and multiple works (prints). It is one of the most prestigious prints collections in France’s regional museums.
In 1860, when the archaeology museum was first created, the initial collection was established with drawings, engravings and lithographs that were part of a donation from the Nantes and Loire-Atlantique History and Archaeological Society.
This unique regional collection was the central point of the graphic arts collections of the museum and has been growing ever since.
In 1895, Thomas Dobrée's prestigious collection of 3,000 prints came into the museum's possession. It included, among other things, engravings from the 16th and 17th from northern European artists such as Dürer or Rembrandt.
Lastly, a third collection, which has been growing strongly since the 1970s, presents some Neo-classical drawings, mostly French, from the end of the 18th and early 19th century.