Thursday, May 26, 2016

Le Musée du Louvre

Very easy to describe what I did this day: I went to the Louvre.

It is, if you aren't aware, the world's largest museum – a fact my feet are well aware of as I sit and type this – with some of the most famous artworks in existence, such as the Mona Lisa and the Venus di Milo.

So, I knew I had to spend some time there while I was in Paris.

They've got a great Egyptology section.

I couldn't help but think of Mony Python:

Incidentally, the French word for 'mummy' is 'momie'.

I find it especially amusing that the ancient Egyptians revered the ibis, a creature referred to in contemporary Australia as a 'bin chicken'.

There are a *lot* of statues in the Louvre.

"Excuse me, sculptor – I'm a little bit sensitive about the size of Any chance you could slap a ribbon over it?"

I was waiting for her to move, T-1000 style.

Just a naked kid playing with his tortoise.

"I swear, if you yell 'Freebird' one more time, I'm going to come down there and slap the shit out of you. Anyway, here's 'Wonderwall'."

Napoleon III's chair. I want one with J's on it.

All of the below is from the apartments of Napoleon III, Emperor of France. Did these people learn nothing from what happened here only a couple of generations prior?

From one of the windows.

One of my favourite things is finding paintings featuring truly ugly baby Jesuses. And there's plenty of them.

Ah, Saint Sebastian. I knew we'd meet again.

This guy looks totally stoned.

"Dude, is there a knife in my head?"

If you don't know what this is, we aren't friends any more. Unsurprisingly, this exhibit was a) packed and b) frustrating because of it. You can't get very close to it, which is annoying; I'd really like to have gotten a proper look. And nearly everyone there just wants to get a picture of it and move on. As such, I don't think I got the experience I was hoping for.

There's something about ermines in paintings.

Eugène Delacroix's Liberty Leading the People - a very famous French painting.

The rooms frequently have amazing ceilings.

Jacques-Louis David's The Crowning of Napoleon. It's HUGE, like 10m x 6m, as you can probably tell if you use the guy in the left bottom corner for scale.

Some mosaic floor from a recreation of an ancient temple.

Ventriloquism was surprisingly popular in the ancient world.

More ceiling.


The sculpture that, most importantly, inspired one of the greatest ever episodes of The Simpsons. I was hoping they sold gummi versions, but they didn't. See you in hell, candy boys!

Jokes aside, she's quite mesmerising in real life.

L'Hiver  (French for winter)

Louis XIV.

Here's a statue of a guy being bitten on the ass by a lion.

Oh, they also had Titian's The Crowning With Thorns, that I very much liked – but the light where it was would have made for annoying reflections off the glass, so I didn't take on. But here's what it looks like. I was fascinated by the way the spears crossed – I suspect it has some significance, but my knowledge of art history is next to nothing, so it's lost on me.

And another Titian I didn't photograph but did note down: Conjugal Allegory. It's just...odd.

Here's what the Louvre website had to say about it: "Titian created this work in the wedding table prototype, a genre that has made a fortune in Venice. Spouses are disguised as Mars and Venus, along with the protective deities of marriage: Cupid with arrows, Vesta crowned with myrtle, Hymen holding a basket of flowers and fruit. The crystal ball held by the woman as if she wanted to read the future and melancholy expressions of the characters have interpreted the scene as an allegory of the separation after the departure or death of one spouse."

I am no better off for having read that.

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