Musée d'Orsay: Impressionism ... at the train platform
The Eiffel Tower, the Notre Dame, Ile Saint-Louis ... On the Seine, shuttle passengers are sure to enjoy a range of visual delights thanks to all the monuments on show.
You'll be dazzled by the sights: have your camera at the ready! Look at the long building on the left bank of the river. It is like no other.
This is the Musée d'Orsay ...
Glorifying the nineteenth century
Imagine an old train station converted into ... a building dedicated to 19th century art. For the first time, an industrial building has been transformed into a cultural space.Instead of station platforms, you'll find a great nave, a sort of spinal column bathed in natural light.
Airy and panoramic, the Musée d'Orsay is a true success story and perfect for art lovers "the main work of art at the Musée d'Orsay is ... the museum itself"
The works of French painters such as: Manet, Degas, Monet, Renoir all represent contemporary life of the time...
Artists created snapshots of everyday life: a range of sculptures, photos and other creative achievements are on display here.
A little history
The idea to transform the Gare d'Orsay into a museum was born in the 1970s. A terminus for trains from the south west of France until 1939, the Gare d'Orsay, a victim of technological progress, changed its raison d'être over the years. Once a parcel shipping centre during the war, at other times a film set, the old station was transformed into ... one of the most important Parisian museums in 1986.
It is the most visited in the French capital. The museum owes its success to the vast range of sculptures and more than 5 000 paintings from 1848 to 1914.
The highlight? An extraordinary collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings (Gauguin, Seurat) that pave the way for modern art.
Renovated in 2011
In 2011, the Orsay museum underwent a makeover and strengthened its position as a museum of 19th century art. New rooms and a space dedicated to Van Gogh were built there, where 24 paintings are proudly displayed, including self-portraits of the famous Dutch painter.
The highlight of the museum? Undoubtedly, it is the 5th floor where you can find the Gallery of Impressionism along the quais de Seine with a dozen rooms on five themes:
• Origins of Impressionism
• The first exhibition of the Impressionists in 1874
• Painting Modern Paris
• Impressionism around 1880
• The sources of the twentieth century: Monet and Sézanne after 1900
More space, easier access - yet the spirit of the station is maintained
Despite the renovations which improve comfort and access for visitors, the spirit of the Orsay railway station, built in 1900 by architect Victor Laloux, is still retained.
On the ground floor, galleries are nestled on each side of the central nave, dominated by the huge golden clock, a remnant of the old station.
On the middle and upper levels, new rooms showcase permanent exhibitions and many temporary exhibitions held throughout the year.
Not to miss, the Rodin area, which gathers twenty sculptures from the French artist such as Portes de l’Enfer (Gates of Hell) and bronze busts like L’Homme au nez cassé (the Man with the Broken Nose).
1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur