Heart of the interior
The inside of the château is composed of about sixty rooms each with its own architectural and decorative specificity. The chapel, big guardrooms, spiral staircases, fireplaces and subterranean passages are reminders of the medieval era, creating the best part of the castle namely is its warm inviting atmosphere.
Superb French style ceilings, dating back to the Renaissance and 17th Century, are elements of glory in this castle.
Tapestries from Flanders, Brussels and Aubusson are elements the unique selection of tastefully decorated walls. One room, especially, which is covered with leather pieces from Cordoba originally from the castle of Vauvenargues. These very rare leather pieces known as “gilded polychrome” were ordered from a craftsman in Aix-en-Provence in 1680.
Beautiful gypsum sculptures from the 18th century, located in the reception rooms, the dining room and the bedrooms, are reminders of the proximity of Aix-en-Provence. A reception room covered with mural paintings representing the Versailles Gardens was probably decorated at the same time as the French style garden designed by Le Nôtre.
During the French Revolution, the castle was not damaged.
In 1797, a marriage was arranged between the owner of the castle, Palamède de Forbin, and a rich heiress from Grasse. Both of them acting as patrons, invited artists which created various decorations for the interior and exterior premises.
As early as 1798, the famous painter Marius Granet could be found in La Barben. He was the inseparable friend of Auguste de Forbin who was Palamède’s brother. The painter who was a regular guest at La Barben, took an active part in its decoration.
The reading room painted in the style of the loggias by Raphaël in 1798, and the very elegant Pompeiian boudoir painted in 1808 for Princess Pauline Borghèse, show, how much intimate refined places were appreciated in those days.