Tag Archives: museums

Musée Rodin

14 Jun

The Musée Rodin is actually very close by to my school in Paris, maybe a ten minute walk on the same road. So obviously, I must have gone many time before, right? Wrong. Somehow, I never thought of visiting until a gray day in June with torrential downpours. To an outdoor museum. I make all the best decisions.

The museum itself is housed in Hotel Biron, where the French sculptor Auguste Rodin did much of his work. It’s a pretty building that they basically moved all the furniture down, invested in some anti-theft tech, and put in a bunch of marble, bronze, and paper-mache sculptures. (And a few of the paintings that Rodin owned, like a Van Gogh or two, a Monet, and a Renoir. You know, as you do.)

burghers of calaisBurghers of Calais

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Musée d’Orsay

12 Apr

I wandered past Solferino yesterday and had the vague desire to do something productive with my time after class, so I went into the Musée d’Orsay on a whim. It’s a pretty impressive building over on the left bank of the river and I’ve never been. (I know, I know. That’s what happens when you live long term someplace, you put off all the touristy things.) Thanks to my handy residence stamp, I got in free of charge. I’m really, really liking the “free entrance to museums for people under 26” thing.

The Musée d’Orsay is actually an old railway station that was retrofitted to hold some of France’s best impressionist and post-impressionist art. For those of us who fell asleep during art history, this means it’s got a lot of Monet, Degas, Renior, Cezanne, Van Gogh, and a bunch of others who you might have heard of. It’s also got a lot of French sculptures. The building itself is stunningly beautiful, in a way that makes you wish Grand Central or Penn could be. I’ll grant you Grand Central has that awesome hall that shows up in movies, but let’s get real: no one stares at the ceilings of the LIRR waiting room in awe.

The museum is pretty strict about their “no photography” rule which does add to the experience a little, since you’re not agonizing over every photo and can actually appreciate the art. Instead, I wandered around writing down the names of paintings that I liked. In no particular order, here’s what I enjoyed. (Images blatantly stolen from around the internet.)

L’Enigme by Gustave Dorél'enigme dore Continue reading

The Louvre, Part Two

5 Apr

the louvre

It’s been a while since I visited the Louvre last year, so when some friends came into town I agreed to go with them. It’s such a huge museum and there’s so much to see; it’s basically impossible to see everything culturally important. In fact, after a while, your brain turns to mush. “Oh look,” you mutter to yourself, “another ‘Assumption of Mary Into Heaven’.” You get exceptionally good at spotting Biblical stories.  (Especially the ones that can be drawn topless, like the story of Jesus and the Adulteress, or anything with Delilah or Bathsheba.)  Finding something inspired by Greek or Roman mythology is like shooting very dumb fish in a very small barrel. You get bored and start noticing how long it takes to walk through a hall. When was the last time you ate, anyways? Maybe we should go to the cafe, you guys.

I call this Museum Fatigue. Some people are cultural marathoners, and can spend days wandering the exhibits. Some people are sprinters, and can be done with a museum in under two hours. I’m somewhere in between the two, but mostly I tap out after three hours. Our group was mixed between sprinters and marathoners, meaning two of us spent a few hours hanging out at the museum cafe talking while the others were getting some culture in. (Hint: I was one of the people at the cafe.)

In the meantime, I did see some cool new things this visit.

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