Monday, March 26, 2012

Musee d'Orsay

The Impressionists live at the d'Orsay. A trip to Paris just wouldn't be complete without a visit to see their major works on the 5th floor gallery of the converted old iron train station Gare d'Orsay.

The Musee de Louvre includes art from ancient times and classical civilizations through 1848.  The Musee d'Orsay picks up at that point with the Impressionists and post Impressionists through 1914 and the beginning of World War I.   The Pompidou Center continues with Modern Art.  

To get a picture without the crowds that gather in this plaza to buy their entrance tickets, we snapped this picture when the museum was closed.  On our visit we waited about 40 minutes through a zig zag line until we could get our tickets, go through security and get into the museum.

This entrance was also the entrance for the old train station,  Here horses and carriages and later cars and taxis jockeyed for space to unload passengers and luggage beneath that fan shaped iron roof covered with glass.  The train station, abandoned in 1939 since it was too small for the newer longer trains, was subsequently remodeled by the French government and reopened in 1986 as the museum of today.

The big clock on the front of the station posted the time so that the train passengers would know at a glance if they were running late to catch their train.

This handsome fellow was cast by Henri Jacquemart          
for the 1878 Paris International Exhibition.

This old rhino has seen a lot in his days.  Wonder what he finds most amazing?  The new Eiffel Tower that was created, like him, for the Exhibition of 1878, or today's tourists in tee shirts toting cameras and water bottles lined up at his feet?

You can't take pictures in the museum itself, but in the cafe it is pas de problem.  This is the back of the clock that was pictured from the street in the picture above!

Yep, it's still working!

Time for a break from all the culture.  This must be the longest chocolate eclair in Paris--rather like a foot-long hot dog!  Maybe it was the longest, but it wasn't the best....but certainly adequate!  The test is still on to find the best eclair.  We'll keep looking.

As long as we are taste-testing eclairs, we might as well have some cafe.

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