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Gumbo's Pic of the Day, Apr. 2, 2014: Looking Across Time

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Visitors here are silhouetted against the Great Clock at the Musee d'Orsay. The museum is housed in a former rail station and hotel; the clock is visible from quite a long stretch of the opposite bank of the Seine.


Visitors to the Museum's cafe often stop to enjoy the view from behind the clock while visiting the museum's collection. The Museum is the official home of most of the French government's collection of art spanning the early 19th to early 20th centuries, and including some of the world's deepest collections of works by the Impressionists, their immediate predecessors and influences, and then the movements influenced by them. MORE



Above, how the clock looks from the outside; the Paris-Orleans reference is to the Paris-Orleans Railway that built the Gare d'Orsay in 1900 as a Paris terminal for its trains. The picture below is of the clock that hung over the train platforms and today is part of the museum's decor.





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The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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The Orsay was my favorite museum in Paris.  I also remember admiring that wonderful clock, but the impressionists paintings within its walls were just incredible!


I really never understood the impressionists until I visited the Orsay and had a chance to view hundreds of their paintings.

Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

Seeing this picture, I somehow assumed that the Gare d'Orsay was the location of Martin Scorcese's movie 'Hugo'.  But now I read that the station in the movie was actually a composite of "Gare Montparnasse, the train station where a major part of the film’s action takes place...the Gare du Nord for its façade and the Gare de Lyon for its geographic location and clock tower, an important plot element in Hugo."  


Momentarily disappointed, I read on, "... the Gare d’Orsay, provides another glimpse of train stations from a bygone era... Its enormous clocks inspired Scorsese’s version of Hugo’s Gare Montparnasse..."  Read it all here.


Thanks, P., beautiful.

Last edited by PortMoresby

I've been wracking my brain for the 6th, did not cheat, promise.  Besides the ones above, Gare du Nord, Gare de Lyon & Montparnasse, there's Est & St Lazare.  So if Bercy counts, then that's 6.  I've left & returned from Bercy but have never been sure about it.  Now tell us, please.

Bercy is the one, and the one I had the hardest time recalling. But! SMH, as they say these days, I realized that it is actually No. 7! I left out the Gare d'Austerlitz.


The 6 came from a reference online, which I since realized was old enough perhaps not to include Bercy, which was a freight station until 1977, when it was reconfigured to handle overnight sleepers, especially those on which you can take your car with you.


The two no-longer operating stations are Orsay (of course) and Bastille. The Promenade Plantee was the viaduct bringing trains from the east to Bastille, which was closed in 1969 so most of its line could be incorporated into RER A. The station itself was demolished to make way for the Opera Bastille.


Obviously, I didn't know ALL of this an hour is broadening, and so is talking about it...

The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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