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Saturday, August 7, 2010

Europe Day 13, Paris: Hello Paris!

There were two museums that we could NOT MISS in Paris, one is the famous Louvre and the other is the Musee d’Orsay. Because going to two museums in one day made our heads hurt we decided to split them up, today we visited the Musee d’Orsay.

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FAMOUS PRESERVED TRAIN CLOCK

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EVEN THE GATES OUTSIDE THE MUSEUM WERE IMPRESSIVE

I was super excited about visiting this museum, of course I had heard a ton about it but on further research I learned that they had one of the best collections of Impressionist paintings in the world… SCORE impressionism is one of my all time favorites! I couldn’t wait to get inside.

The location of the museum was created in a railway station that had to be closed in 1937 due to the fact that their platforms were too low for the new trains. The station was saved from demolition and renovated into this museum. The large domed ceiling, plenty of light and excellent restoration of the original tiled ceiling; light and airy the architects made excellent use of the space.

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THE SPACE ALONE MADE ME SO HAPPY

Although the Impressionism collection is what this museum is known for to my IMENSE surprise rather than the formal portraits, for me, the statues stole the show. Perhaps because the statues were mostly situated down the long central corridor and bathed in early morning soft light (my favorite kind of light) regardless the statues is what captured all of my attention.

Here are some of my favorites from this collection.

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1820 SAPHO BY JAMES PRADIER

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1872 DAVID BY ANTONIN MERCIE (NOTICE GOLIATHS HEAD UNDER HIS FOOT)

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1871 JEUNE TARENTINE BY ALEXANDRE SCHOENEWERK

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1864 PAN AND THE BEAR CUBS BY EMMANUEL FREMIET

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1881 LA PETITE DANSEUSE BY EDGAR DEGAS

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1902 MATURITY BY CAMILLE CLAUDEL

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1899 NATURE UNVEILING HERSELF TO SCIENCE BY ERNEST BARRIAS

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1897 ST MICHAEL SLAYING THE DRAGON BY EMMANUEL FREMIET

After the museum we rested for lunch before walking over to the Notre Dame Cathedral which is French for Our Lady of Paris. This Cathedral considered one of the world’s finest examples of French gothic architecture almost was lost to us during the French Revolution. The book “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” in its vast popularity strongly encouraged the country of France toward Gothic revival of architecture which led to renovations at Notre Dame.

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NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL

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REACHES HIGH INTO THE SKY

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THE CARVINGS WERE INCREDIBLE, GIVES NEW MEANING TO THE WORDS ‘THEY JUST DON’T MAKE THEM LIKE THEY USED TO’

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EVEN THE DOORS WITH THEIR INTRICATE IRON ARTISTRY TOOK MY BREATHE AWAY

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BUT MY FAVORITE PART WERE THESE ROUND WINDOWS… FROM THE INSIDE THAT IS

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THE VIEW OF THE WINDOW FROM THE INSIDE

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STAINED GLASS WINDOWS WERE EVERYWHERE

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SAY A PRAYER AND LIGHT A CANDLE

After sneaking into Notre Dame… Oh right I didn’t tell you that part. Well you see since we went to the museum in the morning the lines were super long and we decided that it was too long to wait so we planned on just circling the outside of the building and continue on our way. However once we got to a doorway that some would call an exit, one of us, and I am not mentioning names just went up to the door to peek in leaving the other two of us standing at the exit… when that someone remained gone for many many moments another of us went to see what was up leaving the last of us just standing at the gate… waiting several moments the third of us followed and well that is how we accidentally with hoping for just a peek of the inside took advantage of the fact that there was no one placed at the exit to say no and got into the cathedral.

I felt guilty and left a huge donation… hopefully that makes up for something.

Ok so when we exited Notre Dame we headed off to the close-by Jewish Deportation site that Ms. Dancer’s aunt said we could not miss. Rather well hidden in the back of a park this moving memorial was created in memory of over 200,000 Jews who were deported from France during the Nazi horror to concentration camps. The place never gets crowded as a guard only allows a certain number of people in at one time. The place is a below-ground cavern filled with moving quotes and then you round the corner and see the hallway of lights. Each light represents a person deported with a sad unknown light representing the one unknown person deported. Being in that memorial fills me with a very somber feeling. All I can think about is that this cannot ever happen again.

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JEWISH DEPORTATION MEMORIAL

After the memorial visit we had to hustle to make our dinner boat ride down the Seine River. Of course there was a debacle, the taxi driver dropped us off at the wrong location which forced us to RUN, in the rain (Ms. Pool Shark was five months pregnant, poor thing) so we would not miss our boat. And look she looks gorgeous even after 15 minutes of running in the rain!

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MS. POOL SHARK HAPPY TO HAVE MADE IT TO THE BOAT ON TIME

They served dinner on the two hour boat trip below deck where you could view the city passing by. Smile girls!

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MY TWO LITTLE FELLOW WORLD TRAVELERS

There was also a roof deck which we ran up to occasionally to get some photos between the rain.

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AT LEAST THE WEATHER MADE FOR AN INTERESTING SKY

2 comments:

paul peggy zeus said...

There is nothing more remarkable than all the art Europeans are famous for. The Buildings are ornate and everywhere you look is art at it's finest. I really love that purple round window inside the Notre Dame Cathedral! Beautiful statutes like non anywhere else in the world.

lilmansworld said...

Paris seems so intense for 4 days. My brain would hurt just after this 1 day. 5 months preg, she's probably not even showing. What a trouper!

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