France is brimming with museums and galleries that have attracted artists from all over the world for centuries. From Cezanne to Degas, from prehistoric cave paintings to contemporary art, tourists flock to this country that is rich in art and have produced the best artists in history. Here are a few tourist favorites:
The world’s most visited art museum in the world, The Louvre contains a wealth of art treasures ranging from ancient civilizations to the 19th century. No trip to Paris is complete if you have not visited this museum that boasts of around 35,000 exquisite treasures from all around the world. Masterpieces such as Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, the Hellenistic sculpture known as The Winged Victory of Samothrace, and the Ancient Greek statue of Venus de Milo are on display and is open for public viewing.
Renowned for its prestigious collection of Impressionist art, the Musée d’Orsay is a national museum devoted to painting, architecture, sculpture, decorative arts, and photography from 1848 until 1914. It houses a wide variety of artistic movements that include Realism, Academism, Symbolism, and Impressionism among others. You can find the works of some of the best artists in history such as Renoir, Manet, Bonnard, Cézanne, van Gogh and many others.
The Centre Pompidou
The Centre Pompidou is one of the best-known sites in Paris because of its exterior escalators and immense colored tubing. It houses the National Museum of Modern Art and is the only museum that displays a comprehensive view of 20th and 21st-century art collections. It is divided into two sections: the modern period from 1905 to 1960 which includes the works of Matisse, Picasso, and others, and the contemporary period from 1960 to the present day (Andy Warhol, Niki de Saint Phalle, Anish Kapoor among others).
Musée du Petit Palais
Elegantly featuring the architecture of “La Belle Epoque,” the Musée du Petit Palais has an impressive collection of Renaissance paintings of the Avignon school. It contains precious art objects from the French and Italian Renaissance, ancient and medieval collections, and Flemish and Dutch paintings among the 1,300 works of art from the Antiquity throughout the early 20th century. Best of all, it is open to the public absolutely free of charge!
Built by the French sculptor Auguste Rodin in 1916 and opened in 1919, the Musée Rodin is a museum solely dedicated to his sculpture as well as the works of his muse and mistress Camille Claudel. Also a painter, sketcher, engraver, and collector, Rodin created such masterpieces as The Thinker, The Burghers of Calais and The Gates of Hell. This majestic mansion is surrounded by 3 hectares of serene and romantic French-style gardens that are abundantly planted with trees and shrubs and has the master’s sculpture spread all over.
France is home to thousands of museums and art galleries that welcome millions of tourists annually. Whether collections of the old masters or modern art, France has the top quality galleries, and are all worth a visit.