Orsay Museum Guided Tour
with Private Licensed Guide Lecturer
Book an Orsay Museum Guided Tour to explore art evolution from academism, romanticism or realism to impressionism. Figure out how and why the impressionist art revolution happened in Paris in the second half of the 19th century. Discover main master pieces of Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, Auguste Renoir, Berthe Morisot or Mary Cassatt. Understand impressionism key factors of success in Paris and the USA. Identify posterior art transformation with Paul Cézanne, Georges Seurat, Paul Signac, Vincent Van Gogh, or Paul Gauguin. Orsay is big, so your licensed guide lecturer will help you to make the most of your visit in the Musée d’Orsay, the most beloved one in Paris.
Why Visit the Orsay Museum ?
Why a Guided Tour of the Orsay Museum ?
Secondly, Orsay is big and though you will find it smaller than Le Louvre, It is one of the largest museums in Europe. Your tour guide will be there to optimize your stroll in this vast museum which presents its collection across numerous floors.
Taking an Orsay Museum guided tour with us is definitely the right solution to make the most of your visit there.
Orsay Museum Guided Tour Content
Starting by the begining with the « Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture » heirs, « les Salons », with Jean-Auguste Domique Ingres Neoclassism, Alexandre Cabanel or Jean-Léon Gérôme Academism.
And then continuing with impressionism precursors as the romantismled by Eugène Delacroix, the Realism of Gustave Courbet, the Barbizon school ( Jean-François Millet, etc.), Eugène Boudin, Johan Barthold Jongkind, early Édouard Manet.
Claude Monet,Frédéric Bazille, strong>Auguste Renoir, Paul Cézanne, Alfred Sisley, Camille Pissaro, Édgard Degas, Gustave Caillebotte, etc.
Neo-Impressionism and Post-Impressionism
Georges Seurat, Paul Signac, Vincent Van Gogh, Paul Gauguin, Odilon Redon, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, etc.
More About the Orsay Guided Tour ?
Things are not so simple in arts !
A simple three parts classification makes things more understandable, but artists often do not conform with it. Neoclassical Ingres, for instance is also a precursor of modern artswith his naked figures expressive distortions. Or Gustave Caillebotte: impressionists patron, impressionist himself whommost famous painting « Les raboteurs de parquet » (The Floor Scrapers) is outstandingly realistic.
Our Orsay tour enlighten this kind of questions and try to answer simple interesting maters as: were Degas or Manet impressionist?
The key role of an Impressionism patrons
we will also see that forward-thinking art dealer Paul Durand-Ruel had a major influence on the Impressionist Art development as he established impressionism popularity in the USA and bought 1500 Renoir, more than 1000 Monet, 800 Pissarro, etc. during is career.
Changes bringed by Industralisation with its technical inovation and its human misery had a great influence on the impressionist movement.
Japonism, the Influence of Japanese arts, is noticeable on the works of many artists, as for example Vincent Van Gogh in « Bedroom in Arles ».
Socially, all these painters were linked together, sometimes surprisingly as avant-garde Édouard Manet and academic Ernest Meissonier or Thomas Couture. World of literacy was also linked with this art revolution via novelist Emile Zola or poet Charles Baudelaire.
You will also discover that some iconic painters of the period were women as Rosa Bonheur with her artistic Realism or Berthe Morisot and the American Mary Cassat, both actively participated in the impressionist revolution.
Understand the evolution in the use of colors
During late 17th century Pousinists and Rubinist at the French Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture were discusing what was more important between drawing and color. In the 19th century the debate toke a new dimension with « the Theory of Colors » (Goethe, 1810) and « The Principles of Harmony and Contrast of Colors » ( Chevreul 1839). Till Jean-Auguste Domique Ingres was a drawing defender, Eugène Delacroix was aware of these color discoveries later deeply used by Impressionists and Post-Impressionists like in:
- Poppies by Claude Monet: contrast of complementary colors
- The Circus by Georges Seurat: Divisionism and Pointilism
- The Talisman by Paul Sérusier under Paul Gauguin close supervision: Cloisonism and the triumph of color.
Some Masterpieces of our Orsay Guided Tour
Olympia by Manet or his no less famous Luncheon on the Grass, in French « Déjeuner sur l’herbe » as the one by Monet are masterpieces planned in the tour.
The Orsay Museum owns a collection of nearly 80 Claude Monet paintings so we will show you more than one with :
- The Saint-Lazare Station, depicting the modern life.
- Rouen cathedral series, light study.
- Blue Water Lilies, on the way to abstract arts.
Our Orsay tour route will also cross the Card Players by Cézanne, an adapted motif from Le Nain brothers 17th-century genre painting. The Orsay version is the most famous one in a series of five, one of then have been sold around $250 million in 2011.
The hanged Man’s House, Auvers-sur Oise, is an early impressionist painting presented in the 1874, first impressionist exhibit which already shows the importance of volume for Cézanne. An aspect of his work which inspired Picasso and Braque in the early 20th century in a new art evolution called cubism.
Auvers-sur-Oise is also famous as Van Gogh last place of residence where he painted 78 works in 70 days. The Church in Auvers-sur Oise differs from the impressionist canvases, it does not give the impression of a church but Van Gogh expression of a church. An anticipation of expressionism and fauvism.
Orsay Tour Historical Context
- Second French Empire (Napoléon III)
- Franco-Prussian War (July 1870-January 1871)
- French Third Republic (Belle Époque)
- Industrial Revolution
- European Imperialism
Painting Styles Broached in the Tour
- Academism (the art of following rules and conventions)
- Romanticism (medievalism, imagination and emotion)
- Orientalism (inspired by Egypt and Algeria expeditions)
- Realism (an expression of 19th-century society)
- Impressionism (our Orsay guided tour central subject!)
- Neo-Impressism (pointillism, chromoluminarism, etc.)
Know More About the Orsay MuseumThe Musée d’Orsay is located along the River Seine, in a fabulous looking 19th-century building, the former Paris-Orléans railway company train station.
Transformed by Italian architect Gae Aulenty, the building was inaugurated as Musée d’Orsay by French President François Mitterrand in December 1986.
Orsay is close to the Louvre, on the other bank of the Seine River and can easily be reached from the Tuillerie Gardens,using a walking bridge arriving just in front of the Orsay Museum entry.
Last, if you like the Napoleonic period the Musée de la Légion d’honneur is just in front of the Orsay entrance parvis.
Orsay Guided Tour booking INFORMATION
Your private licensed guide in Paris
- State-graduate licensed guide lecturer.
- Bachelor with honors in Heritage Developpement & Preservation from the Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers
- Postgraduate from Paris-Dauphine University.
- Really private 2-hour tour, we don’t add people to your group.
- Get an overview of the French painting from 1850 to 1914
- Understand the impressionist revolution in art
- Go straight to the main and most relevant works of art
- Discover Masterpieces by Manet, Courbet, Monet, Van Gogh, etc.
- The opportunity to ask your dedicated guide any related questions
In front of the Orsay Museum at the rhino statue, rue de la Légion d’Honneur, 75007 Paris.
Access: Métro Line 12 station Solférino. RER C station Musée d’Orsay.
On foot: A pleasant stroll crossing the Seine River from Tuillerie Garden and Le Louvre.
Orsay-Tour Attention Points
- Tour is on foot.
- Prices do not include transportation, food, drinks or any other extra services.
- Tour duration and content are indicative. Visit may vary due to contingencies.
- Private tour means we don’t add people to your group, not that Orsay is privatized.
- Skip-the-line access means access to a privileged entry, a line (normally shorter) can also exist there, security controls remain mandatory.
- Cloakroom: no privilege, so do not bring big bags to avoid to queue there.
- Ideal tour time: thursday evening as Orsay less crowded remains open until 9:45 p.m.
Choose below your tour
You will then be asked :
- choose number of people, date & hour of visit
- after our validation
- pay on line
Orsay Museum Guided TourExtended tour (2 hours)
For 1 to 2 people + 35€ for any extra person
A group of maximum 6 people exclusively yours
Orsay Museum Guided TourFamilly offer tour (2 hours)
For 1 to 2 adults + a max of 4 children (under 16 years old)
A group of maximum 6 people exclusively yours
Any questions? Write at
Orsay Museum Guided Tour by licensed guide lecturer. Sculptures at Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France
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You like art? French fine arts museum are not only in Paris! Visit the Orléans Museum of Fine Arts,
one of the most important outside of Paris ! A must in Orléans the entrance door of the Loire Valley at only +/- one hour by train from Paris!
We offer very affordable private tours of the Orléans Museum of Fine Arts!
Your licensed guide in Paris is the holder of card n° CG 17-45-05, he is a member of FNGIC which is a member of the World Federation of Tourist Guide Associations.