Tuesday, April 28, 2009

First Sunday = FREE

On the first Sunday of each month, all of the state-run museums in France are free. So, after Ames and I go-karted (okay, it was a golf cart...) our way through the gardens of Versailles, we hopped the RER back to the city and went to the Rodin Museum and the Picasso Museum.

The Rodin Museum was amazing. I highly recommend it as a 2-hour stop if you are ever in Paris. (It will only take 2 hours if you have a short wait to get in, and you like to look at and think about the sculptures. If you are like my father and jet through museums at the speed of light, this museum will take you 30 minutes once you get in, including the beautiful gardens).

Oh, also... many of the major works presented inside the house are presented in their final versions in the gardens. It's only 1 Euro to go in the gardens... if you're looking to save money and time. (You're welcome.)

A view of the back of the house from the gardens.

Amy being a statue in the gardens (with a tree growing out of her head. Sorry, Ames.)
The Thinker

Creepy fish-face lady

Just a little taste of what the interior of the house looks like. I'm sure it was in much better condition when it was inhabited... but it's still beautiful.

The Kiss

This one is called "The Hand of God" and it is shaping the forms of Adam and Eve. It is also on a turntable pedestal and displayed in front of a large mirror, because Rodin intended for this sculpture to be viewed from all sides. You can see the back of the sculpture reflected in the mirror (And I can't tell you how many evil stares Amy and I got when we moved the turntable. It's OKAY, people!! This is actually allowed!!)

The Cathedral (formed with two right hands)

The Picasso Museum is, in my opinion, completely skippable. There are several reasons I came to this conclusion:

1) The layout is horribly tangled, so you have to cross through rooms you've already been in (and disrupt people who are trying to stop and look while you, annoyed, have to walk through the room YET AGAIN)

2) No air conditioning, too many people, and no open windows. Stuffy, hot, and altogether unpleasant.

3) I found the presentation of the works to be jumbled and I couldn't make sense of it. Was it chronological? By theme? Were Picasso's works presented next to art he had acquired that specifically influenced those works? Or was it purposefully chaotic? Maybe that was the point.

Either way, photography wasn't allowed in the museum, so here is a quick view of the front facade (which looks like it's being renovated... let's hope that's why the inside of the museum is such a mess).

and a clandestine picture of a painting from the museum. This was housed in a room the size of a small bathroom... and apparently no museum staff was relegated to sit there all day. So, yep. I took a picture.

I'm not a huge Picasso fan to begin with--though there were some works (mainly sculptures) in the museum that I liked. Overall, I would say that if you're not an art fanatic or a big Picasso fan, you can feel good about leaving this one behind.


meagan said...

Mmmm. I LOVE Rodin! When I was there it was a beautiful day, but right as we got to the Gates of Hell it started pouring rain. Very appropriate and kind of scary...

Brooke said...

I would love to see the Rodin museum. He is my all-time favorite sculptor! As always, I'm so jealous.

hknight said...

The Rodin museum looks beautiful! Wasn't the Borghese in rome full of his work too? I think his work is so pretty!