Yesterday was the first Sunday of August and a free day at state museums. We decided to take advantage to return to The Louvre to see the Helene and Victor Lyon Collection. The truth is that Jean wanted to see the Louvre’s only Degas, a wonderful pastel of a woman bathing.
We climbed from the Metro to find a line extending across the grounds, through two large courtyards, out the gates, and around the block. An attendant at the end of the line held a sign that said it would be a 3 hour wait. We asked someone in line how long they had been waiting and did some calculations to determine that we weren’t going to stay.
We crossed The Seine into the St. Germain des Pres district. Musee Delacroix is there and it was on our list of places to visit. As another state museum it also was free. However, unlike its illustrious neighbor across the river The Delacroix had no line. We were waved in and spent a wonderful 90 minutes. The collection includes not only works by Delacroix, but paintings that he had in his personal collection. We had visited 8 years ago and were surprised to see new paintings that hadn’t been displayed then. We also were disappointed that some favorites were not on display at this time. That’s the reality of the art museum world.
We decided to walk to The Marais with a stop on Ile de la Cite and the little park at the NW end of the island. A sunny bench and pigeons kept us there for an hour. As we crossed Pont Neuf to resume our walk we decided to check outthe lines at The Louvre again. This time they were inside the grounds and it appeared as if they were moving. Therefore, we abandoned plans for The Marais and got in line. An hour and a half later we were in The Louvre. That gave us ample time to take pictures while in line. I’ve included a few of mine. These are taken with our small Nikon point and shoot camera because I didn’t take my Canon today.
After successfully climbing to the top floor and into the 19th century painting exhibit we settled in the room occupied by the Lyon Collection. We spent almost an hour just looking at the paintings and marvelling that one couple collected all of them. It’s worth looking for this if you’re ever at The Louvre. The big masterpieces get all the crowds and attention, so this exhibit is quite accessible and you’re not pressured to “move on.”
After our Metro ride and walk home we were both wiped out. Our favorite Lebanese take out place provided some vittles for dinner. It became an early evening as we both crashed after dinner. Today will be an easy day of lounging and painting.