Musée D'Orsay (Paris)

London & Paris Day 5 Part 2 (Click here to return to the London & Paris Travelogue)
- Musée D'Orsay

After having a hearty breakfast at Eric Kayser, we walked to Musée D'Orsay. The Museum ticket costs €11 but we bought the Paris Museum Pass (2 Days, 42€) which included admission to various Paris attraction and a special queue to enter the museum!

It is housed in the former Gare d'Orsay, a Beaux-Arts railway station built for the 1900 World Fair. The building itself could be seen as the first "work of art". The Museum is devoted to all the arts between 1848-1914. The various artistic movements represented include Academism, Realism, Impressionism, Symbolism , Art nouveau. Just to name a few of the featured artists: Manet, Monet, Rodin, Renoir, van Gogh.
 
Interior of Musée D'Orsay

Unfortunately, the Musée D'Orsay does not allow for pictures in the museum. However, I have attached a photo of the exact painting that was brought to the National Museum in Singapore. The explanation provided by the National Museum of Singapore is as follows.

"Van Gogh enjoyed the fine evenings and starry skies of the Midi region in southern France and the 'effects of night' intrigued him. In September 1888, he wrote from Arles that he went 'to paint the stars', seeking to transcribe that which is 'darkness but nonetheless colours'. The banks of the Rhone provided Van Gogh with a composition where the night light and its reflections enabled him to give body to the elements sky, earth and water. The sky dominates the composition ,painted in cobalt blue with wide energetic and spontaneous brushstrokes. The Great Bear is clearly visible, and the stars are painted in outwardly radiating strokes with thick white highlights at their centre, sometimes applied straight from the paint tube. Amid the multitude, the artist has scratched a number of unformed rosettes within the paint layer." - Provided by the National Museum of Singapore during the Dreams and Reality: Masterpieces of Painting, Drawing and Photography from Musée D'Orsay.
Starry Night Over the Rhone, 1888, oil on canvas. At the National Museum of Singapore

Even if the descriptions may sound complicated! It's fine as the museum is great even if you "know nothing" about art. The paintings here are so famous that you may have seen them used in pop culture. For example, the painting of Whistler's Mother was featured as a major plot element in the 1997 Rowan Atkinson film Bean.
Whistlers Mother, 1871, by James McNeill Whistler Photo by Orsay Museum (2003)

There are many other paintings that you will have to see to believe. They are as good as photographs! Below is the painting of "The Comeback of the fisheries" by Joaquin Sorolla.
The Come Back of the Fisheries' Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida


The exterior of Musée D'Orsay
What you need to know:
- The Museum is closed on Mondays.
- 09.30 am - 6 pm on Tuesday to Sunday with late openings on Thrusdays until 9:45pm
- Audio guides are available in French, German, English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Japanese, Chinese and Russian for €5.
- "Children" under the age of 18 enters for free.
- No entry fee on the First Sunday of each month

(Click here to return to the London & Paris Travelogue)

Here is the map for Day 5 of my London & Paris Trip.
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About Haoming Koo

Koo Haoming. Founder of The Fat Chemist. Currently an undergrad at the National University of Singapore with a burning passion for science! Inspired to start a blog after reading the book, "Napoleon's Buttons, How 17 Molecules Changed History". The book fills the gap between Chemistry and History. Adapting the style of the book, posts written by me highlight the chemistry in the food we eat.
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