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French art

Major 3 museums in Paris

French art - Major 3 museums in Paris

When you visit Paris, I recommend you to visit museums.
You can see all the tides of art history of French art.
Of course you can see many French paintings other than France,
but they are mostly impressionists's works.
You should visit museums in France, especially in Paris
to appreciate French art.

There are 3 huge museums in Paris;
Louvre, Orsay and National Modern Art Museum in Pompidou Center.
If you visit these 3 museums, you can learn the course of the French art history.

Louvre Museum: from medieval age to the mid-19th century
I think I can say Louvre is the biggest museum in the world.
You can appreciate French art from the medieval age to the mid-19th century.

There is a special corner to exhibit big paintings of 19th century.
It is a good area and you must see,
but it is a pity that if you join the package tour, you only visit this area

George de la TourFrench art in Louvre starts from 14th century,
the religeous paintings.

I recommend to see the paintings of
George de la Tour of 17th century.
He painted the works with
wonderful light and dark contrast.

Charles le Bran
who decorated Chateau de Versailles
painted dynamic painting in the same century.

In 18th century, Rococo style was popular among nobles.
Painters like Wateau and Fragonar painted with this glamorous style.

We know a lot of paingings done In the 19th century.
Davide and Ingres made new classic style.
Delacroix and Gericault made Romantic movement in the peaceful time.
Landscape paintings appeared just before the impressionism's birth.
Corot's sentimental painting were popular amoung Parisien,
because Paris had been changing to the modern city.

Other than French art, you can appreciate also Renaissance maestro,
like Leonard da Vinci and Raffaello Santio.
Don't miss them!

Orsay Museum: around Impressionism
In Orsay museum has huge collection of Impressionism
which is most loved by Japanese people.
The collection starts just before the Impressionist;
Millet of Barbizon school,
Courbet who painted the labor and ordinary people.

Before Impressionism appeared, it was important
'how the painter copies the reality on the canvas'.
So, they created the styles like perspective and light & dark contrast.

But in 19th century, the camera was invented.
It was the end of the idea that painting must copy the reality.
Then the painters try to find brand new way to express.

Japanese Ukiyoe (woodblock print) was introduced to them at that time.
It was a shock for the French painters.
Ukiyoe is very planar, unshaded, bold composition, etc.
Edouard Manet introduced the essence of Ukiyoe in his paintings,
and that is why he is called the father of Impressionists.

Then Monet appeared.Claude Monet
When we image the Impressionism paintings, I think we think of his painting.

Impressionism was epoch-making.
They changed
the long unchanged history of the art.

They changed
the concept of ideal paintings.

If I explain Impressionism in a single phrase, they changed how light was caught.

You might think that painters painted landscape outside of the atelier
(because the paint got easily dry before),
but Impressionists were the first painters who did so.

If you look their paintings from the distance,
they look copying reality with different style from the classical style.
But if you look closely, there are thick lines and dots with the primary colors.

It was the course for the foreign students called 'French Civilisation at Sorbonne'.
They try to mix the colors in the eyes of viewer not on their palette.
If you mix the primary color paints on the palette, it gets darker.
But if you mix in your eyes, it gets brighter.

You cannot miss Renoir who painted happy people,
and Degas who painted ballet dancers under the artificial light.

Then collection follows to;
Post-impressionists like Cezanne, Gogh and Gauguin,
New impressionists like Seurat.

National Modern Art Museum of Paris: Modern Art
At the National Modern Art Museum of Paris in the Pompidou Center,
you can appreciate the modern arts after Impressionism and so on in the Orsay.

Until the time of Impressionism, we could bracket the styles of the time,
but after 20th century, it became very difficult.
Even Picasso of Cubism, Mattisse of Faubism changed their style by themselves.

Wasily KandinskyPainters started to be unique
not only by the way of painting
but what they paint,
or how they paint
(for example,
action painting artists
didn't use brush.)

Even the form disappeared
and abstract paintings by the Kandinsky for example, became popular.

Some painters were bracketed not only by their style but their lifestyle.
We call the foreign painters who moved to Paris, Ecole-de-Paris.
Tsuguharu Fujita, Japanese painter was one of them.

Pompidou Center

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