For my day at the Louvre I decided to give up my tourist accessories (my camera, my backpack full of shit, etc…) and just focus on the museum.
I wore a pretty dress and only brought my essentials; my phone (urgh!), wallet and a metro map.
I had a GORGEOUS breakfast at a small cafe next to the Palais Royale (mmmmmmm, croque Madame!). Then I made my way to the, all too famous, Glass Pyramide.
The pyramid was shining golden in the early morning light.
The ticket hall, underneath the pyramid, was CRAZY with people. But the Louvre functions like a well oiled machine, so I had my ticket, my audio guide and I’d dropped my coat off within 15minutes.
It really gladdened my heart to see all those people excited to spend their day in an art museum.
Art is wonderful. It should be loved and supported.
I started with the small section devoted to the history of the Louvre.
It wasn’t super informative.
But then I found myself in the centre of the Egyptian antiquity collection, and Holy Smokes is it massive! I spent nearly 4 hours in the one collection and probably saw a third of what was there.
I had a rather impressive lunch in the Louvre cafeteria; roast chicken with herbs and ratatouille (imagine finding that at a museum in Aus!).
Then I wandered towards the French and Dutch painting collections.
I had never realized how Italian heavy most classical art galleries were until I spent some time in the French collection.The paintings are SO DIFFERENT! And I have to say, I much prefer the French and Dutch styles now.
The works I saw incredible beautiful and detailed but they weren’t burdened by the over dramatization and the constant catholic imagery of the classical Italian styles.
I took a quick squiz at the Louvre’s collection of Objets d’Art (which made me giggle cuz I’m such a furious Boosh fan). Gorgeous and full of history.
But I had to run, I was running late for a very important date.
The Italian wing was JAMMED with people not looking at the art around them.
I followed the throng, to a small room to the side of the main collection. And there she was, the Mona Lisa.
The painting is beautiful, I will never dispute that. But she is VERY small and, in comparison to some of the works I had seen earlier in the day, she was kind of unimpressive.
I decided to finish my day at the Louvre checking out the brand new Islamic arts wing.
Now THAT was impressive.
The collection was pretty big and expertly displayed in this purpose built wing of the museum.
The collection was so inspiring that I now desperately want to see the Middle East.
(And I’m pretty sure I just heard my mother fainting, all the way from Europe.)
After almost 8 hours in the galleries, I was looking for some souvenirs when I realized that there was an entire shopping wing attached to the museum!
As you know, I spent most of my time in the Mac store. But across the hall was a Laduret Macaroon store and I FINALLY tasted my first Parisian macaroons!
Earlier in the day, I received a text from the boyfriend of my kind friend Hannah back in Canberra. Matthew (the bf) was in Paris and was wondering if I wanted to meet for a drink. I was so excited to see a familiar face that I immediately made plans to meet with him that very evening.
So after my long day at the louvre, I jumped on the Metro and met Matthew in the Marais for a beer.
We wandered the busy shopping streets, chatting about home and the felicity of finding each other in Paris. We beer’d for a while. Then I (quite nervously, considering the late hour) made my way back to my apartment without being robbed! Huzzah!
When was the last time you went Art Gallerying? If you can’t remember the last time, I’ma suggest that you do so immediately! I’ve been doing a lot of galleries and museums over the past month and a bit, and I’ve decided to make it a much more regular habit when I get home. Maybe you can come with me!
Pictured – the low lit Louvre (how did I do that without a camera? MAGIC!) & the mini Arc