The photos in this post are from my latest visit to the Musée des Beaux-Arts (Fine Art Museum) in Lyon.
One of the delights of taking time in a museum like this is the chance to observe the artists' skill in creating and manipulating light to achieve a desired effect. Not only is it pleasurable, it's instructive as well.
Looking up a naturally lit stairwell off the main museum entrance.
One of the first galleries we pass
through during our visit.
"Les Parapluies Revel" by Cappiello, 1922. You can
"Saint Cécile" (left) by Guillaume Perrier, early 1600s.
Cécile is known as the patron saint of music, a handy bit
of trivia should the question ever come up during a pub quiz.
Natural light filtering down through the ceiling.
"Le Mauvais Propriétaire" by Jean-Claude Bonnefond, 1824.
I translate the title of this one as "The Wicked Landlord".
"Entrée du pont de la Guillotière par un temps de pluie" by Nicolas Sicard, 1879.
This bridge spans the Rhône river and is crossed by thousands of people every day.
Below is a color photo lithograph (not part of the museum collection) from roughly
the same period and shows what the bridge and surrounding areas looked like near the turn of the century. Source: Wikipedia
A man sitting in front of "Choppy sea in Etretat" (right) by Monet, 1883,
while listening to an audio guide (included in the price of your entry ticket).
The audio guide includes hundreds of hours of commentaries about selected works of art throughout the museum. Click here to listen to a commentary of the above work by Monet or here for a list of available English language audio guides.
"Jeune femme en blanc, fond rouge" by Henri Matisse, 1946.
The colors of my photo aren't right - it wasn't until I got home I realized
my camera settings were a bit off. You can see the museum's version here.
The museum also houses some more modern pieces.
Here is a temporary exhibit (until 3 May 2011) dedicated to
French artist Max Schoendorff, born in Lyon in 1934.
"Naturam natura docet" by Max Schoendorff, 1985.
"Le Coq" by Marc Chagall, 1947.
The rooster (coq), incidentally, is the national bird of France.
"Intérieur de couvent" by Fleury Richard, late 18th/early 19th century.
Though relatively small, especially compared to some of the other
gigantic pieces hanging in the museum, this is one of my favorites.
Hall dedicated to the Italian painters.
"Jeune Fille au Ruban Bleu" by Pierre-Auguste Renoir, 1888.
Visiting a museum virtually like this doesn't let you get up close and see the fine details of the master's brush strokes. Or in the case of Monet and other Impressionists, take enough steps back to appreciate the whole scene in a startling new way.
There are hundreds more works, large and small, ancient and modern, still waiting in the museum to be discovered, including many temporary exhibits throughout the year.
The Musée des Beaux-Arts is open every day except Tuesdays and bank holidays.