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Musee d'Orsay

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The Musee d'Orsay or the d'Orsay Museum is perhaps the 2 nd most famous museum and 2 nd most widely visited museum in all of Paris, next to the magnificent Musee du Louvre. As with many other popular attractions in the grand City of Lights, the d'Orsay is easily accessible by public transport, with a Paris RER station just ashort walk away. Once a grand railway station, the Musee d'Orsay transformed into a world-class museum, which has the distinction of housing many famous modern art paintings, including Monet's “Blue Water Lilies” and “Whistler's Mother”. The train station was also known as d'Orsay, which is the name of one of the 20 arrondissements (districts) of Paris. The Gare d'Orsay or train station, eventually became obsolete because of the short length of its railroad tracks within the station and the longer length of 1930s modern trains.

Open every day of the week except for Mondays, the d'Orsay is located less than 3 km from the Eiffel Tower, along the Left Bank or Rive Gauche of the River Seine. The closest Metro station is on the RER or Regional Express Network, which a light rail system that serves both underground rail and ground level rail lines. The RER station itself is named Musee d'Orsay so you know you're close by. When you first walk in, you will immediately notice the museum's impressive clock that dominates the main hall.

Although relatively new and much smaller than the gargantuan Musee du Louvre, the Musee d'Orsay is no slouch with its priceless collection of art. In fact the museum houses the largest collection of the Impressionistic and post Impressionistic era between 1848 and 1914 in the world. Among the many distinguished artists on display at the museum are Paul Cezanne, Edgar Degas, Paul Gauguin, Edouard Manet, Claude Monet, Camille Pissaro, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Vincent van Gogh and the American born, London based James Abbott McNeil Whistler.

Notable works of art from these artists are as follows:
Paul Cezanne: “The Card Players” and “Portrait of Mrs Cezanne”
Edgar Degas: “The Ballet Class”, “Portrait of the Bellelii Family” “Fin d'Arabesque” and “L'Absinthe”
Paul Gauguin: “Tahitian Women”
Edouard Manet: “Olympia”, “The Fifer”, and “The Balcony”
Claude Monet: “Blue Water Lilies”, “London, Houses of Parliament”, “Argenteuil”, and “Luncheon on the Grass”
Camille Pissaro: “The Seine and the Louvre”
Pierre-Auguste Renoir: “Dance at Le Moulin de la Galette”, “Girls at the Piano”, and “Portrait of Claude Monet”
Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec: “Justine de Toulouse-Laurtrec”, “The Clown Cha-U-Kao” and “Jane Avril Dancing”
Vincent van Gogh: “Self Portrait”, “Starry Night over the Rhone Aries”, “the Church in Auvers-sur-Olse”, and “Van Gogh's Bedroom in Aries”
James Abbott McNeil Whistler: “Whistler's Mother”
Several other distinguished painters are on display such as Eugene, Boudin, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Alexandre Cabanel, Gustave Moreau, Edvard Much and Henri Rousseau.

There is also a wonderful collection of sculptures within the museum, which features works from Jules Cavelier, Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux, Paul Gauguin, and August Rodin, the sculptor of the famous “The Thinker” who has a museum of his own in Paris. The Musee d'Orsay also houses decorative arts, photography, graphic arts and architecture, which all should be viewed if time permits.

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