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Musée d'Orsay

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Serge Lemoine

Musée d'Orsay

Rue de Lille 75343 Paris, France

Art museum, Design/Textile Museum, Historic site

3.0 million (2009)Ranked 3rd nationallyRanked 10th globally

Public transit access
Solférino Musée d'Orsay

1 Rue de la Légion d'Honneur, 75007 Paris, France

Closing soon · 9:30AM–6PMWednesday9:30AM–6PMThursday9:30AM–9:45PMFriday9:30AM–6PMSaturday9:30AM–6PMSunday9:30AM–6PMMondayClosedTuesday9:30AM–6PMSuggest an edit

Olympia, Whistler's Mother, The Gleaners, Le Déjeuner sur l’herbe, Bal du moulin de la Galette


Mus e d orsay paris march 2015

The Musée d'Orsay ([myze dɔʁsɛ]) is a museum in Paris, France, on the left bank of the Seine. It is housed in the former Gare d'Orsay, a Beaux-Arts railway station built between 1898 and 1900. The museum holds mainly French art dating from 1848 to 1914, including paintings, sculptures, furniture, and photography. It houses the largest collection of impressionist and post-Impressionist masterpieces in the world, by painters including Monet, Manet, Degas, Renoir, Cézanne, Seurat, Sisley, Gauguin, and Van Gogh. Many of these works were held at the Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume prior to the museum's opening in 1986. It is one of the largest art museums in Europe.


Une journ e au mus e d orsay


The museum building was originally a railway station, Gare d'Orsay, constructed for the Chemin de Fer de Paris à Orléans and finished in time for the 1900 Exposition Universelle to the design of three architects: Lucien Magne, Émile Bénard and Victor Laloux. It was the terminus for the railways of southwestern France until 1939.

By 1939 the station's short platforms had become unsuitable for the longer trains that had come to be used for mainline services. After 1939 it was used for suburban services and part of it became a mailing centre during World War II. It was then used as a set for several films, such as Kafka's The Trial adapted by Orson Welles, and as a haven for the RenaudBarrault Theatre Company and for auctioneers, while the Hôtel Drouot was being rebuilt.

In 1970, permission was granted to demolish the station but Jacques Duhamel, Minister for Cultural Affairs, ruled against plans to build a new hotel in its stead. The station was put on the supplementary list of Historic Monuments and finally listed in 1978. The suggestion to turn the station into a museum came from the Directorate of the Museums of France. The idea was to build a museum that would bridge the gap between the Louvre and the National Museum of Modern Art at the Georges Pompidou Centre. The plan was accepted by Georges Pompidou and a study was commissioned in 1974. In 1978, a competition was organized to design the new museum. ACT Architecture, a team of three young architects (Pierre Colboc, Renaud Bardon and Jean-Paul Philippon), were awarded the contract which involved creating 20,000 sq. m. of new floorspace on four floors. The construction work was carried out by Bouygues. In 1981, the Italian architect, Gae Aulenti was chosen to design the interior including the internal arrangement, decoration, furniture and fittings of the museum. Finally in July 1986, the museum was ready to receive its exhibits. It took 6 months to install the 2000 or so paintings, 600 sculptures and other works. The museum officially opened in December 1986 by then-president, François Mitterrand.

The square next to the museum displays six bronze allegorical sculptural groups in a row, originally produced for the Exposition Universelle:

  • South America by Aimé Millet
  • Asia by Alexandre Falguière
  • Oceania by Mathurin Moreau
  • Europe by Alexandre Schoenewerk
  • North America by Ernest-Eugène Hiolle
  • Africa by Eugène Delaplanche
  • Paintings: major painters and works represented

  • Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres – 4 paintings (the main collection of his paintings is in the Louvre)
  • Eugène Delacroix – 5 paintings (the main collection of his paintings is in the Louvre)
  • Eugène Carrière – 86 paintings including The painting family, The sick child, Intimacy
  • Théodore Chassériau – 5 paintings (the main collection of his paintings is in the Louvre)
  • Gustave Courbet – 48 paintings including The Artist's Studio, A Burial at Ornans, Young Man Sitting, L'Origine du monde
  • Jean-François Millet – 27 paintings including Spring, The Gleaners
  • Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot – 32 paintings (the main collection of his paintings is in the Louvre) including A Morning. The Dance of the Nymphs
  • Johan Barthold Jongkind – 9 paintings
  • Alexandre CabanelThe Birth of Venus, The Death of Francesca da Rimini and Paolo Malatesta
  • Jean-Léon GérômePortrait of the baroness Nathaniel de Rothschild, Reception of Condé in Versailles, La Comtesse de Keller
  • Pierre Puvis de ChavannesYoung Girls by the Seaside, The Young Mother also known as Charity, View on the Château de Versailles and the Orangerie
  • Gustave Moreau – 8 paintings
  • Honoré Daumier – 8 paintings
  • Eugène Boudin – 33 paintings including Trouville Beach
  • Camille Pissarro – 46 paintings including White Frost
  • Édouard Manet – 34 paintings including Olympia, The Balcony, Berthe Morisot With a Bouquet of Violets, The Luncheon on the Grass
  • Berthe Morisot – 9 paintings
  • Edgar Degas – 43 paintings including The Parade, also known as Race Horses in front of the Tribunes, The Bellelli Family, The Tub, Portrait of Édouard Manet, Portraits, At the Stock Exchange, L'Absinthe
  • Paul Cézanne – 56 paintings including Apples and Oranges
  • Claude Monet – 86 paintings (the main collection of his paintings is in the Musée Marmottan Monet) including The Saint-Lazare Station, The Rue Montorgueil in Paris. Celebration of 30 June 1878, Wind Effect, Series of The Poplars, Rouen Cathedral. Harmony in Blue, Blue Water Lilies
  • Alfred Sisley – 46 paintings including Inondation at Port-Marly
  • Armand Guillaumin – 44 paintings
  • Frédéric Bazille – 6 paintings
  • Mary Cassatt – 1 painting
  • Odilon Redon – 106 paintings including Caliban
  • Pierre-Auguste Renoir – 81 paintings including Bal au moulin de la Galette, Montmartre
  • Ferdinand HodlerDer Holzfäller (The Woodcutter)
  • Gustave Caillebotte – 7 paintings including The Floor Scrapers
  • Édouard Detaille – The Dream
  • Vincent van Gogh – 24 paintings including Self Portrait, portrait of his friend Eugène Boch, The Siesta, The Church at Auvers, View from the Chevet, The Italian Woman, Starry Night Over the Rhone, Portrait of Dr. Gachet, Bedroom in Arles
  • Paul Gauguin – 24 paintings including Tahitian Women on the Beach
  • Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec – 18 paintings
  • Eugène JanssonProletarian Lodgings
  • Henri-Edmond Cross – 10 paintings including The Cypresses in Cagnes
  • Paul Signac – 16 paintings including Women at the Well
  • Théo van Rysselberghe – 6 paintings
  • Félix VallottonMisia at Her Dressing Table
  • Georges Seurat – 19 paintings including The Circus
  • Édouard Vuillard – 70 paintings
  • Henri Rousseau – 3 paintings
  • Pierre Bonnard – 60 paintings including The Chequered Blouse
  • Paul SérusierThe Talisman, the Aven River at the Bois d'Amour
  • Maurice DenisPortrait of the Artist Aged Eighteen, Princess Maleine's Minuet or Marthe Playing the Piano, The Green Trees or Beech Trees in Kerduel, October Night (panel for the decoration of a girl's room)
  • André DerainCharing Cross Bridge, also known as Westminster Bridge
  • Edvard Munch – 1 painting
  • Gustav Klimt – 1 painting
  • Piet Mondrian – 2 paintings
  • James McNeill Whistler – 3 paintings including Arrangement in Grey and Black: The Artist's Mother, also known as Whistler's Mother
  • William-Adolphe Bouguereau – 12 paintings including The Birth of Venus
  • Cecilia BeauxSita and Sarita (Jeune Fille au Chat)
  • Sculptures

    Major sculptors represented in the collection include Alfred Barye, François Rude, Jules Cavelier, Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux, Émile-Coriolan Guillemin, Auguste Rodin, Paul Gauguin, Camille Claudel, Sarah Bernhardt, and Honoré Daumier.

    Other works

    It also holds collections of:

  • architecture and decorative arts
  • photography
  • Management

    The Directors have been:

  • Françoise Cachin: 1986–1994
  • Henri Loyrette: 1994–2001
  • Serge Lemoine: 2001–2008
  • Guy Cogeval: March 2008–present
  • References

    Musée d'Orsay Wikipedia