Millet, Courbet, Carpeaux, Manet, Rodin, Renoir, Monet, Nadar, Gallé, Guimard, van Gogh, Maillol… all the greatest artists of the second half of the 19th century can be found at the Musée d'Orsay. In this former station, transformed into a museum in 1986, the masterpieces of painting are found alongside sculptures, decorative objects and photographs, all testimony to the incredible vitality of artistic creation in an era that saw the birth of Realism, Impressionism and Symbolism, as well as the Vienna Secession and Pictorialism.
The recent renovation and refurbishment work, as well as increasing the space by almost two thousand square metres, has provided an opportunity to completely rethink the presentation of this unique collection.
From the vast sculpture concourse to the Symbolist gallery on the ground floor, through the Impressionist Gallery transfigured by its new lighting and dark wall colours, then through the rooms devoted to Post-Impressionism (van Gogh, Gauguin, etc) into a gallery dedicated to the memory of Françoise Cachin, the museum’s first director, and finishing with the unique showcase of international art nouveau, and the large Nabi decorative works in the Amont Pavilion, the whole museum is waiting to be rediscovered.
In addition to the permanent collections, there is a programme of temporary exhibitions, both themed and retrospective, throughout the year, with works from all over the world.
During the visit, whether guided or not, the visitor can enjoy the opulent decor of the former station hotel, take time to eat in the museum restaurant or relax in the more contemporary atmosphere of the café decorated by the Campana brothers and bathed in natural light through one of the famous station clocks.
There are a thousand ways to discover the Musée d'Orsay and just as many reasons to come back.
©Musée d'Orsay / Patrice Schmidt