Friday, October 11, 2013

DATELINE: Paris (5)

Model of the Cluny

Front courtyard
Today was a "culture" day.  Despite cold and wind, we set off for the Cluny early.  It's only about 3 blocks from here ~ down the narrow street, up past the Sorbonne, down rue St. Jacques, left of rue du Sommerad (home of Le Home Latin, hotel I stayed in with my daughters on our first trip to Paris) and finally to the Musée du Moyen Age.  It's a huge stone pile that was once a private residence and now houses the finest collection of Medieval art and artifacts anywhere.  That includes the Flemish tapestries of The Lady and the Unicorn which are always a destination in this museum. But where is she? Unfortunately for us on this trip she's currently hanging out in Japan while the gallery where she is usually found undergoes renovations. We have seen these magnificent hangings on other trips but it never hurts to see them again She'll be back toward the end of November; we leave on the 13th so she just might be back in residence by then, in which case we'll pay another visit. If not, she moves to the top of the list for the next visitl

Meanwhile, there are plenty of other treasures to enjoy.

Statuary galore including this Adam ( a bit more modest than David)
Ornately carved altar piece

Crucifixion detail from above altar piece

Tapestry (not a very good angle)

The heads of state, aka:  kings of France

Crucifixes and chalices (sorry about weird color; lighting very poor and no flash allowed)
Delicate gold rose; same problem with lighting

Chess and domino board and game pieces

Jewelry of gold and lapis in, again, strange green lighting

All of this, plus much more we wandered through for a couple of hours.  Then it was to the market for a few supplies and home for lunch.  Afterward we watched Romance and Reality, Part 3 of the Kenneth Clark "Civilisation" series.  It will tell you all you might want to know about the High Middle Ages with more information about the Flemish tapestries.

Tomorrow is a trip to the Jacquemart-André Museum.  The collection  offers a look into the lives of a middle-class French couple who put their life's efforts into collecting and living among beautiful things. 

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