Musee d'Orsay, The

Margherita d'Ayala Valva
Synopsis The French art of the 19th century, as it is represented at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris, offers us an insight today into the peculiarities of a century that was at once dreamy, romantic, visionary and realistic, as if we were looking at the illustrations of a great novel. The selection of works presented here, which can be described as some of the most unforgettable in the entire history of art, covers a period that starts out with Ingres, the sublime master of form, continues with realist and impressionist painting and culminates in the experiments of the fin de siècle, which paved the way for the avant-garde movements of the 20th century. Thanks to its unprecedented approach to the use of color, the French painting of the 19th century introduced the public to new ways of seeing. Emerging from the halls of academe, it gave rise to the extraordinary season of impressionism, a phenomenon that even in our own day continues to attract a truly enormous number of visitors, flocking every year to pay homage to these masters, whose pictures fill the rooms of this magnificent Parisian museum.

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