It was time to get a bit of culture, I haven’t been to a museum since I arrived, in Paris.
Both Musée Nissim de Camondo and Musée Jacquemart-André à Paris are both magnificient houses and give an insight into how some people lived. Plan a morning visit to Musée Jacquemart-André à Paris, followed by lunch in the wonderful dining room. Definitely not to be missed in my opinion.
This time I wanted to try something new but right at the last minute before I took off, I wondered whether it was worth taking the camera and how long the fading battery was going to last. It turns out that there are a few camera shops not far from me, of course it wasn’t cheap but what price do you pay.
First museum was Musee D’Art Modern de la Ville de Paris.
Offering fantastic views across Le Seine to The Eiffel Tower. The front of the museum looked like a wasteland. It is in the process of renovation, corrugated iron covers some of the windows, which have been sprayed with graffiti, the pond is empty and I started to wonder if it was even open.
The museum is free and perhaps they should charge or at least have donation boxes around, to help maintain the building.
There are some gems to be found inside, including a few from Monet, Modigliani,
Rodin sculptures, Picasso and an amazing new discovery for me; Eugene Leroy, 1910-2000.
It isn’t easy to explain but on first sight and up close, his paintings seem like a waste of money, piles and piles of oil paint layer upon layer like a Sara Lee cheesecake.
After a while and a little distance, it becomes apparent, a bit like the magic eye books. The image appears in front of my eyes and voilà, there it is.
An interesting observation, when I photographed it with the iphone, the images are much more obvious than to the naked eye. Very clever indeed.
What was not only an interesting walk, along the river, passing the hoards of people making the pilgramige to the Trocadéro to look back down to the Eiffel Tower, but I also saw the aftermath of New Years Eve. The council are still in the process of cleaning up.
Next stop, was one of the homes of the writer, Balzac.
Maison de Balzac, is a mere 4 euros to enter and in fact, free, when they don’t have a temporary exhibition. It is hard to believe that standing in the ritzy 16th arrondissement, amongst apartment blocks and High Commission buildings, is a little cottage with a garden that has views of the Eiffel Tower.
Now for a little further afield but still in the 16th arrondissement; Le Musée Marmottan Monet. I left the best to last, knowing it was open until 9pm on a Tuesday.
I had read some pretty scathing reviews on this place, which boasts the largest Monet collection in one place.
Maybe the reviewers didn’t find the fantastic open space in the basement of what was an old hunting lodge. There are the first series of Water Lillies, which became the inspiration for the much larger versions, he painted especially for l’Orangerie.
If you are a Monet fan, this is a treat or simply, if you would like to walk around a beautiful old former hunting lodge behind the Bois de Boulogne which was once a forest, kept for royal hunts.
Walking from Maison de Balzac to Le Musée Marmottan Monet was worth it in itself. The very chi-chi area of Passy with its lovely shops and fabulous undercover market is a wonderful place to be.
Stumbling across an inviting cosy and friendly place called Bistro de la Muette, where the service was subtle and the food was wonderful. I had snails and duck, which came with an Apéritif and wine for 39 Euros.
The bonus was Le Muette metro is right over the road, so it was an easy journey home across the other side of Paris in the cold.
What can I say, all in all it was another fabulous day, with camera cords to boot!