Musรฉe d’Orsay ๐Ÿ–ผ๐Ÿ—ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง

Bal du moulin de la Galette, 1876, Pierre-Auguste Renoir

My absolute favorite art museum is surely the Musรฉe d’Orsay in Paris, on the left bank of the Seine. It is housed in the old Gare d’Orsay, a Beaux-Arts-style station built between 1898 and 1900. The museum mainly houses French art dating from 1848 to 1914, including paintings, sculptures, furniture and photos. It houses the largest collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist masterpieces in the world, including Degas, Gauguin, Monet, Manet, Renoir, Van Gogh.

Le Dรฉjeuner sur l’herbe, 1866, by Claude Monet

The museum has a good number of paintings by Claude Monet, from his early period and, above all, this large unfinished painting which was a response to a work painted by his colleague ร‰douard Manet a few years earlier on a similar subject. The light and shadows of the trees are one of the main points of attention although the painting is populated with many figures. In relation to the painting exhibited by his colleague Manet three years earlier, this Breakfast on the Grass, is much less controversial for the subjects portrayed but remains contentious for the lack of interest in the human characters and the focus on the other elements of the composition.

Le Dรฉjeuner sur l’herbe, 1863, by ร‰douard Manet

The painting by Manet was quite controversial when it was exhibited in Paris for the first time in 1863. It was actually turned down by the Paris Salon and accepted by the Salon des Refusรฉs, the Salon of the Rejected. The controversy was primarily around the female naked figure in the foreground that depicts a real and assertive woman of the time, rather than an idealised women from history or divine origin. The two related paintings, by Monet and Manet, are placed in the same room at the museum, one opposite the other.

La Nuit รฉtoilรฉe, 1888, by Vincent Van Gogh

A large collection of Van Gogh‘s paintings is also on display at the museum, including one of his last self-portraits. The theme of The Starry Night, which appears in various paintings by Van Gogh in his final period, also inspired a beautiful song by Don McLean in the 70s.

Les femmes de Tahiti, 1891, by Paul Gauguin

This painting, Les femmes de Tahiti, belongs to the first period that Paul Gauguin spent in Tahiti, where he wanted “to live there in ecstasy, calm and art”. The painter settled in 1891 in the South Pacific from Paris, escaping the “European struggle for money” and to be “finally free”. This double portrait represents two young women on the beach, one dressed in a traditional sarong and the other, in contrast, in more rigorous missionary attire.

Musรฉe d'Orsay | Artnexus
Some of the new exhibitions for 2021 at the Musรฉe dโ€™Orsay

My favourite museums

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