Very Impressing!
May 31, 2000

(Olympe, by Edouard Manet, the Musée d'Orsay, May 31, 2000)

Bright and early, a few or our Vendéens enjoy a continental breakfast at the Hôtel d'Amiens.  The standard fare is buttery croissants and small loaves of fresh French bread with butter and jam, accompanied by coffee or hot chocolat and a glass of orange juice.  



After breakfast we are off to see the sites.  Here we walk along the quais of the Seine, with Notre Dame de Paris in the background.  Our destination this morning is the Musée d'Orsay.


Of course France's largest national museum is the Louvre.  Its collections run from antiquity to the mid-nineteenth century.  That's where the Musée d'Orsay takes over.  Its collections run roughly from the times of the Revolution of 1848 up to the early part of the twentieth century.  Many call it the museum of the Impressionists, but its collections run from realism through post-impressionism and expressionism.

Here, Manieka Green studies a portrait of the great statesman Georges Clemenceau by Manet.  While we are in Vendée, the department where Clemenceau was born, we will visit his house on the Atlantic coast.  Among other things, we will be able to admire the gardens that were inspired by Clemenceau's best friend and another great Impressionist, Claude Monet.


After a break for lunch, we gather in front of the great pyramid of the Louvre.


As in the past two years, we will be accompanied by Madame Marie Benoist.  Her knowledge of Paris, its art, and its architecture never ceases to amaze us.  Although Madame Benoist speaks several languages, including English, our Vendéens are anxious to learn about France in the language of its people.  Our visit today will thus be conducted in French. 


Nothing of course could be more French than Eugène Delacroix's famous Liberty Leading the People from 1830.  You can perhaps make out a few Vendéens here, notable Katie McMullen at the far right.


It would be a crime to visit the Louvre without paying homage to the great Da Vinci.  His most famous work is visible here as Manieka Green and Rebecca Tarabrella admire the Italian collections.


As our visit of the Louvre draws to an end, we take advantage of the chance to admire the Venus of Milo.

It's been a long day, and few things are more fatiguing than such intense visits.  We'll all try to get some rest before beginning another long but fascination day tomorrow.

Stay tuned to WVU-V!

Back to the Calendar
Comments to: mlasting@wvu.edu