The Louvre   2 comments

After a brief diversion caused by Joe Paterno’s passing, I wanted to return to posting a few more photos from our Paris trip.  In particular, a few photos from the Louvre, a place that I found to be both fascinating and a bit overwhelming.  Musee de Louvre is the most visited museum in the world, and one of the world’s largest. It contains somewhere around 35,000 paintings, sculptures, and other art objects, and covers more than 650,000 square feet.  It is in a word, intimidating.

Unlike many museums, the Louvre allows visitors to photograph most of its art collection, without flash of course.  As I have already posted photographs of the museum’s exterior in my Paris at Night post, I will focus this post on some interior shots along with a sampling of the works of art found there.  We spent a fascinating five hours there and only brushed the surface of all there is to see.

Note:  Unless the works of art are really famous (like the Mona Lisa) you will not find any notes as to artist or subject in the photos below.  My apologies, but it is simply not an area of expertise, and I did not slow down to take notes as we walked through the galleries.  I took photos of whatever struck me as interesting and beautiful.

(Above) The Louvre:  The main lobby, below the glass pyramid.

(Above) The Louvre:  A spectacular staircase, worth skipping the escalators just to walk the stairs.

(Above) The Louvre:  Staircase closeup.  This also happens to be the 5000th photo that I’ve taken with my Canon 50D since I purchased it 18 months ago.

Statues

(Above) The Louvre:  One of the first rooms we entered in (I believe) the Denon wing.  The room was so large that it dwarfed 15 foot tall statues.

(Above) The Louvre:  Hannah checks out one of the works in the large hall.

(Above) The Louvre:  The somewhat homely likenesses of a King and Queen.  Sorry, I didn’t write down the names.

(Above) The Louvre:  More attractive humans are depicted in this work.  I am amazed that a sculptor can take a large block of marble and create something so lifelike.

(Above) The Louvre:  Oooh, I know this one.  Venus de Milo.  Thought to have been sculpted between 100 and 130 BC.  (Yeah, okay, I had to Google the dates).

(Above) The Louvre:  Give me a rock, a chisel, a truckload of sandpaper, and a lifetime . . . and I could not create a perfectly round orb like that, much less the hand, arm, and figure holding it.

(Above) The Louvre:  There were even statues on the ceilings.

(Above) The Louvre:  I don’t remember ever holding my kids this way.  (With one hand, or au naturale.  Take your pick).

(Above) The Louvre:  The flowing dress made of stone.  This was one of my very favorite pieces.  I had to resist the temptation to reach out and touch it.

(Above) The Louvre:  For those of you who have watched Monty Python And The Holy Grail, remember the guy in the dungeon at Camelot?  Yeah, I know, I should have my museum privileges revoked for life, but that’s what this reminds me of.

Paintings

(Above) The Louvre:  Melanie and Hannah in the Denon wing.

(Above) The Louvre:  And the reason so many people go to the Denon wing first — the Mona Lisa.  Da Vinci’s work is behind plexiglass as you can tell by the reflections of other tourists at the bottom of the painting.

(Above) The Louvre:  Religious works were very prevalent from the Medieval and Renaissance periods that comprise this wing of the museum.

(Above) The Louvre:  Naturally the church had the deepest pockets 400+ years ago and commissioned most of these works.

(Above) The Louvre:  I have no idea who this person is or who painted the portrait, but just the beard alone is a work of art.

(Above) The Louvre:  This painting glowed like it was backlit.  That — along with the fact that the people weren’t being killed in battle or persecuted — made it unique.

(Above) The Louvre:  And — no surprise — there were even paintings on the ceiling.

(Above) The Louvre:  And finally, no trip to a museum in France would be complete without a portrait of Napoleon.

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Posted January 29, 2012 by ~ Bruce in Architecture, Europe, Travel Photography

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2 responses to “The Louvre

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  1. My very favorite museum! Thank you for bringing home these pictures! Sculpture has always been my favorite art form and these are such a treasure.

    • Thanks Marty, and I agree — sculpture is such an impressive art form. It is a “subtractive” way of creating something. My mind just doesn’t work that way, so I’m especially impressed by it.

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