Hanging Out with Louis, Rodin, and Cluny

Published Tuesday, 15 November 2011 by Sydney Sunny

This guys are great to hang out with on the weekends. We like to go to the bars on Saturday night…

Ok. You caught me. I have failed in this area of my life, you could say. I still prefer Louis, Rodin, and Cluny over most guys – at the moment. Mister Perfect will come in due time, but till then, I will hang out with Louis, Rodin, and Cluny. By Louis, Rodin, and Cluny, I mean, the Louvre, Rodin Museum, and Cluny Museam.

The Louvre:

My Visit: The Biggest Louvre seems quite intimidating to go hang out on a Sunday, but really it is nothing. I walked around the museum from one end to the other. And like always, I did not see half of it. I started in the Dutch paintings, made my way to the Italian and French paintings, passed through the Greek sculptures, and ended in the Royal Apartments. I took my time because I dedicated a whole Sunday to this museum. I sat down and gazed upon worldwide famous master pieces. I humbly studied and sketched a few that caught my eye. I called this day my Romantic Day in the Louvre.

My Advice: Go to the Louvre. It will be worth every Euro you spend!
Anyways, the Louvre is a whole day event. I highly recommend staying all day. It is a great way to spend a rainy or cold day on your vacation. So, arrive before or around 9 am. Look around at the outside in the morning sun and plan to stay inside all day. If it is Wednesday or Friday, the Louvre will stay open past its normal 6pm closing time to 9:45pm!
If you have never been, start off with the famous Mona Lisa. I don’t mean, race there to look at Mona’s secret smile. I just recomend starting off in this wing of the palace. Seriously, I know you’ve heard the rumors that Mona is not as great as she thinks she is, but no one believes the rumor. As the day advances, avoid this area because hoards of people swarm. Personally, this is my favorite wing, too. You will be welcomed by the fabulous Winged Victory, and greeted with David’s Consecration of Emperor Napoleon I. These and many other pieces will move you more the Mona Lisa – trust me.
Make your way though the Louvre as you please. I recommend Venus de Milo and the Lacemaker. And end your long stay at Napoleon III Appartments – my personal favorite too!
If you skip the Louvre, you are a fool.

The Rodin Museum:

My Visit: I went to this museum half heartily.  I’ve seen Rodin pieces many times and thus, I am bias. The museum contains a house and a garden. I went to Rodin’s House and looked at his masterpieces. Again, I have seen many of his popular works, but not his studies or painting collections. I lingered, not at the large main pieces, but at his studies out of clay and his paintings. There were a few well known Impressionism painter’s worker including a Vincent Van Gogh! Also, I was interested in see Rodin’s work in progress and the case that explained how the large statues were made.
Afterwards, I walked in the garden. The garden was really nice. I miss the countryside and woods were I live in the USA, so I walked slowly under the turning leaves. There were a few late summer roses refusing to give in to autumn’s chill. Among the paths, Rodin’s statues watched the visitors taking pictures of them and me eating lunch.

My Advice: Skip this museum for the Musee d’Orsay. Unless you are keen on Rodin or gardens, I don’t think you would enjoy it. Plus, the museum is not kid friendly due to the sexual nature of Rodin’s work. But, I think, the garden would be nice to relax in after a morning visit at the Eiffel Tower and/or Napolean’s Tomb.

The Cluny Museum or The National Museum of Middle Ages:

My Visit: I arrived at opening time 9:30am. I came on the first Sunday of the month- so I didn’t have to explain that I was a EU student under the age of 26 in broken French. The museum is fulled with, well, Gothic art – mostly art from cathedral. It is a mixture of  staues, paintings, tapestries, and, what I call, church jewelry.  I was impressed but the real statues from the doorway of Notre Dame.  But, nothing can compare to the tapestries of  The Lady and the Unicorn. I’m a huge unicorn fan, so I was pleased with the museum’s unicorn theme! I laughed at the “real” unicorn horn from the Middle Ages! The building of the museum use to be the Hotel de Cluny and is worth admiration too! I was only disappointed to leave!

My Advice:  The Cluny Museum is a short walk down the road from Notre Dame. I recommend going to Notre Dame early in the morning and then coming to the Middle Ages’ Museum! The visit is worth a visit just for The Lady and the Unicorn.  I highly, highly suggest reading the information leaflets in the room. It is worth it.  Also, the building, itself, is very impressive! Also, I saw many local French families bringing their children to the Cluny. All the children, really seemed to be delighted by -of course- The Lady and the Unicorn.


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