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TAKE A VIRTUAL TOUR FROM HOME
When I visited the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, France, a few years ago I was blown away by this grand Museum. The location is a stunning old railway station converted into a glorious monument of French history and art. This is one of the most popular attractions and not to be missed when visiting Paris, if you are fortunate enough to travel there. The Museum normally sees 3 million visitors per year.
However, if you’re unable to see it in person, you can enjoy this marvellous Museum online from the comfort of your home, without travelling.
Situated in the 7th Arrondissement on the Left Bank of the River Seine, at 1 Rue de la Légion d’Honneur 75007 Paris, this gorgeous old railway station complex was built in the late 1800’s. The original purpose was to service the rail line between Paris and Orléans, and was called the Gare d’Orsay. Later it became a hotel, and then remodelled as a museum. The building is a very impressive construction of its time, an elegant and beautiful architectural masterpiece of Beaux-Arts design.
The Museum itself is not very old compared to others in Paris, which have been around a lot longer. It was only established in 1986. The central nave with the massive glass ceiling was retained, as was the gorgeous gold clock at the front. Isn’t it stunning?
Mostly French Impressionist paintings are housed in the museum. It is the largest collection anywhere in the world. The period of 1848 to 1914 is one of the most creative in Western art history. The Impressionist movement was a fresh and innovative method of painting, using different techniques, whilst depicting everyday life, often outdoors, capturing light and movement on canvas. These new modern artists of Paris went against the traditional methods and chose not to paint the normal historical or religious themes. Their work was not appreciated at the time, hence most of them were poor and sadly, went unrecognised in their lifetimes.
Their exquisite paintings are definitely the highlight and main attraction of the Orsay. You will be able to appreciate the glorious masterpieces of the famous Impressionists, such as Van Gogh, Cézanne, Manet, Monet, Sisley, Gaugin, Degas, Renoir, Toulouse-Lautrec and more.
Also on display at the Museum are tapestries, furniture, sculptures, photographs and other forms of decorative art.
The Virtual Tour
Normally it costs 14 euros for an adult ticket to the museum. But you can now do a virtual tour for free online with Google Arts & Culture. This is a fantastic idea and perfect for avoiding the crowds. Also, you can take this tour at anytime, no queuing up and you can stay as long as you like. How good is that!
Here are a few more pictures of the Orsay Museum. Some are my own photos. However, at the time of my visit, photography of paintings was not allowed.
These photos are but a very small selection of some of my favourite art at the Musée d’Orsay which you can see in the virtual tour.
So go ahead.