Friday, December 11, 2015

Day 14: Part III of my Louvre Tour

Honestly, I don't understand why so many people say of the Mona Lisa, "I thought it was bigger." Why? Why would you think it was huge? It's a portrait. Lots of portraits are this size.

It's so crowded around her, it's hard to get to admire her. This time it was mostly people trying to take selfies with the painting.

Leaving the Mona Lisa, I walked through the Salon Denon into the Salle Mollien. It was decorated for the imperial museum, hence the red and gold. It houses large French Romanticism paintings. At one end is the Cafe Mollien. We had lunch there on our previous visit, but there was a line this time and we couldn't get in.

Cafe Mollien, inside the Louvre.

Heading down the Escalier Mollien, I was so happy to see a reproduction of the brass boar that I saw in Florence, Italy. Hope to return to Florence one day. In Florence, the tradition is to put your hand in the boar's mouth to ensure a return trip.

The Galerie Michel-Ange (Michelangelo Gallery) is one of my favorites. It houses Italian sculpture, including Michelangelo's Slaves.

One statue looks like it's taking a selfie, and I saw a human doing the same.

I walked through the Italian and Spanish sculpture rooms. Incredible.

Wooden sculpture of Mary Magdalene.

I absolutely love Italian sculpture, and the terra cotta pieces from the della Robbia studio. Swoon.

Next I went into the Cour Marly. Finished in 1857 and once occupied by the Ministry of Finance, this courtyard was later given a glass roof by Ioeh Ming Pei, the architect of the pyramid. It contains statues from the park at Marly, King Louis the XIV's favorite residence.

View out into the city from the museum.

In the Louvre, there aren't many restrooms, they are hard to find, and crowded. I wound up in a section of Assyrian artifacts while trying to find a hidden restroom. Forget signs! These artifacts are similar to ones we saw in the British museum. Spectacular.

Next on the tour was the Cour Puget, a part of Napoleon's palace. Later it housed the Ministry of State, and then the Ministry of Finance. It now houses statuary. One group was the seasons, and winter is how I felt this entire London/Paris trip. We froze!

On the way to Napoleon's apartments I saw this life sized sculpture, very impressive. It's of a nobleman's burial, Phillipe Pot. Interesting story about him available online if you want to read it.

Beautiful stairway to Napoleon's apartments.

I was so glad I took this self-guided tour of the Louvre as a palace, it's gorgeous! Ornate hallway in Napoleon's apartments...

Gorgeous drawing room.

Napoleon's dining room.

There was an interesting double staircase that originally led to the Imperial Library, the Escalier Lafuel.

From there I made my way out to the main entrance underneath the glass pyramid.

1 comment:

Janet said...

Great description of the fabulous Palais de Louvre. Thank you Celeste.