My favorite museum experience in Paris was the visit to Musee d’Orsay. Our purpose for visiting was to see “Luncheon on the Grass” by Edouard Manet. The painting is considered to be the jumping off point of the Impressionist revolution.
The shocking painting features a nude woman with fully clothed men at a picnic in a park. During Manet’s time, a classic nude painting was acceptable, except in the presence of clothed men. It was morally unacceptable. The painting was rejected by the salon that displayed paintings approved by the official French academy. In response, Manet displayed his painting with the work of other impressionists at Salon des Refuses.
Today, “Dejeuner l’Herbe”, is displayed with the paintings of other impressionists in a gallery at Musee d’Orsay. Visiting the gallery was a feast to the eyes! Even though there were many visitors, I got the chance to spend enough time to appreciate the paintings on display. Pierre August Renoir’s “Dance in the City and Dance in the Country” are eye catchers.
There are paintings by Seurat, Cezanne, Monet, Pissaro, Cassat, Degas, and Van Gogh. I spent too much time at the gallery where “Luncheon on the Grass” was, that I totally missed seeing any Van Gogh! The museum was closing when I learned that the Van Gogh paintings are displayed at the next gallery. Tragic, as I am a Van Gogh fan. My husband consoled me with a Starry Night scarf from the gift shop and a promise to visit again someday.
I wish we had more time at Musee d’Orsay. A half day there was not enough. Hopefully, I would get another opportunity to visit. Crossing my fingers.