As many other metropolises around the world Paris has such kind of public transport as metro. Moreover, we have to note that Paris metro is one of the oldest in Europe. Thus, speaking on French capital, we can not go by this underground transport, or more exactly, its stations.
Curiously enough, even in the eighties of last century Paris metro stations had an unattractive appearance and were very much alike. Common characteristics of metro stations in Paris were vaulted walls with a standard white or gray tile. The only different things of Paris stations were the billboards. So, if we talk about some aesthetic value, Parisian subway, unfortunately, did not have it. However, as time went on, local authorities had attended to the internal design of underground highways. Today, many stations have their own unique interior – unlike any other. And we would like to say few words about design of some of them.
Let’s start from the station, located under the Bastille, which has the same name. The walls here (as before) are tiled, but now it is complemented with frescoes with elements of French press, published at the time of French Revolution. The passengers of subway can also see some extant elements of the foundation of famous Bastille prison.
Station Hotel de Ville has received a permanent exhibition of paintings, prints and photographs after its reconstruction. Thanks to them metro’s passengers can read some historical facts from the history of this area, as well as City Hall.
On the station Champs-Elysses – Clemenceau everyone can admire ceramic frescoes, which are donated to the residents of Paris by a famous artist from Portugal Manuel Cargalero.
Very original station is Louvre – Rivoli. It looks like a kind of a museum hall with bas-reliefs, photographs and replicas of famous sculptures.
On Palais Royal-Musee du Louvre there is an enormous size fresco, consisting of about two million 2-millimeter pearls, whose author was a shaman (and it happens) from Mexico Santos de la Torre.
Jaures station has interesting stained glass windows in the form of colours of the troops, stormed the walls of the Bastille during the Revolution. Their author is our contemporary artist Ducatez.
Another representative of Mexico Hilton Makkonniko made a metal fresco on the theme of Lafayette and the revolution in America on Chaussee d’Antin – La Fayette station.
As for the middle of the station Pont-Neuf so here you will find copies of the coins that have ever been in monetary circulation in France. The place for this exhibition was chosen because Paris Mint is not far from here.
Design of Cluny – La Sorbonne is also very interesting, where a huge mosaic of Jean Bazin is adorned with autographs of the great Frenchmen including Robespierre, Moliere, Richelieu, Rabelais and others.
If you want to find yourselves in something like a sea bathyscaphe, we recommend to get to the station Art et Metiers, located near the Museum of Arts and Crafts.
Station Concord offers passengers certain text extracts from “Déclaration des Droits de l’Homme et du Citoyen” on the walls.
Other stations of Paris metro also have interesting designs, what makes the travel on the underground of Paris a very exciting experience.