Art & Culture

D’Orsay – way from train station to museum

In the end of the century before last (to be exact in 1898) the company “Paris-Orleans” has made a decision to start building a new train station in Paris. The site had been chosen on the Seine left coast, and the new object has received the name d’Orsay. The architect, to whom the station erection has been entrusted, was Victor Laloux who has approached to this question very seriously, and the construction has been put in operation in 1900 dedicated to World’s fair opening. There were sixteen railway platforms at the new station, but besides it there was a place for hotel with four hundred numbers, restaurants and cafes. In general, d’Orsay was a very modern station; however it has helped it to function for only four decades. Since 1939 for some reasons it has been abandoned.

In a consequence numerous attempts to renew its activity were undertaken with no result; throughout decades the station was constantly under the threat of a banal pulling down.

This architectural object was rescued by the president of the French Republic George Pompidou who in 1973 declared d’Orsay a national monument where it have been decided to organize one more Parisian museum to exhibit the works of art created in an interval from the Second French Empire to an early European cubism. The new museum became the ideal decision for capital as such place to it was not, for the Louvre – a classical art museum, and the Pompidou Center created by then was a modern art stronghold.

As a result of the reconstruction Musée d’Orsay had more than forty thousand square meters of area intended for placing numerous collections, and the quantity of exhibits among which sculptures, painting, furniture and drawings, has reached five thousand.

All expositions of the museum are remarkable by their originality as at the heart of their construction the postmodernist principle in which there is no hierarchy of values lies; thanks to that products of great masters and work of yet not recognized authors can settle down in the neighborhood. And such exposition approach allows visitors to estimate a detailed picture of semicentenial French art.

Exhibits of Musée d’Orsay take places on three floors. So, the ground floor is remarkable by sculptural variations of the middle of the nineteenth century and pictorial works of predecessors of impressionists which settle down in side halls.

The second floor will please visitors with products of artists-naturalists and symbolists, sculptors of the second half of the nineteenth century, and decorative graphics of that time.

Fans of impressionism and postimpressionism will find a lot of interesting in the top hall. The museum collection is considered to be one of the most interesting concerning the given art currents.

Initially the collection of Musée d’Orsay has been collected from three sources which were the National museum of the modern art, the Louvre and Galerie Nationale du Jeu de Paume.

With a view of increasing attention of the Parisians and visitors of the capital to a museum the management of the museum undertook various steps, up to financing of films of known directors. Thus, many of us could have seen the museum halls, without having visited them.

Having its own unique collection of impressionism Musée d’Orsay regularly holds exhibitions of exotic photos and pictures. Thanks to such approach the museum is always interesting to the present judges of art.