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Musée d'Orsay: On French Impressionists

Considered to be one of Europe's finest art museums, with a collection of French Impressionist paintings so vast, the Musée d'Orsay ought to be in everyone's Paris agenda. If you are waxing nostalgic about Paris' burgeoning mid-19th century Philosophy and Arts scene, then let no salon whatsoever keep you away from this museum's collection.
IMG ballet dance
L'Etoile ou Danseuse sur scène by Edgar Degas, vers 1876-1877
From 1900-1939, Musée d'Orsay was Gare d'Orsay, a train station connecting Paris with Nantes, Bordeaux, and Toulouse. But after France's national rail network, the SNCF, abandoned operations, the building fell into disrepair and subsequently used for menial purposes, such as a clearing-house for prisoners-of-war and as a film set for Orson Welles' 1962 film, "The Trial". Monsieur Victor Laloux, the original architect of Gare d'Orsay, would have rolled over in his grave should he have known that his architectural masterpiece was being condemned to its end.
IMG woman in a tub
Le Tub by Edgar Degas, 1886
Luckily in 1973, the Pompidou government took an artsy gamble, much as it did with that colour-coded pipe building in the 4th arrondissement (you Paris freaks all know which one I'm talking about). In a mere decade, the French government succeeded in transforming the decaying station into the gleaming gallery we know now. The renovations were carried out by the ACT team (Bardon, Colboc, and Philippon) and the Italian designer Gae Aulenti, who preserved much of Laloux's original building, including his cast-iron pillars and beams, steel arches, and plaster caissons. The Musée d'Orsay was opened by Francois Mitterand in 1986, giving the Louvre a run for its money.
IMG starry night_0001
La nuit étoilée by Vincent Van Gogh (Honorary French), 1888
This magnificent grand gallery wouldn't be much of a success without housing such breathtaking art and sculpture collection from 1848-1914 France. One of my favourite galleries is on the upper level, which showcases the French Impressionists movement. Once rejected by art salons of France as being sort of "Mickey Mouse" art, Impressionist paintings are now one of the most popular and highly celebrated works of art. However, most French Impressionist painters, although achieving notoriety during their time, only attained fame posthumously.

Here are some notables: Degas, Renoir, Gauguin, Monet, Manet, Seurat, Cézanne, Toulouse-Lautrec. Brush up on your French!
IMG l'absinthe cafe
Dans un café, "L'Absinthe" by Edgar Degas, 1876
IMG races
Le champ des courses. Jockeys amateurs près d'une voiture by Edgar Degas, 1887
IMG Bal du moulin
Bal du moulin de la Galette by Auguste Renoir, 1876
Gauguin Two Women
Femmes de Tahiti by Paul Gauguin, 1891
IMG trouville
Hôtel des Roches Noires à Trouville by Claude Monet, 1870
Le déjeuner sur l'herbe by Edouard Manet, 1863
IMG seurat circus_0001
Le cirque by Georges Seurat, 1891
Cezanne apples and oranges copy
Pommes et Oranges by Paul Cézanne, 1895
IMG cabaret lautrec
La danse mauresque ou les Almées by Henri Toulouse-Lautrec, 1895
Musée d'Orsay
62, rue de Lille
Tel. 40 49 48 14
Metro: Solferino (Line 12)

9:30 am - 6 pm
9:30 am - 9:45 pm
Closed on Mondays

Under 18's and members free

*scanned using Canon Pixma. all photos are the collection of Jennifer Laceda

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Musée d'Orsay: On French Impressionists + travel