Short description

The Musée d'Orsay, located in Paris, occupies the former Gare d'Orsay, built for the 1900 Universal Exhibition. The building, inaugurated for the occasion, is itself a work of art. The museum, which opened to the public on December 9, 1986, presents works of art covering the period from 1848 to 1914, including collections of paintings, sculptures, decorative arts, photographs, graphic arts and architecture. Initially, the collections came from the Louvre, the Musée du Jeu de Paume and the Musée national d'art moderne. In 2011, the museum was completely renovated, adding new exhibition spaces. The museum houses the world's largest collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings, with works by Cézanne, Degas, Manet, Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh and many others. It also boasts a vast photography collection, comprising 45,003 works. In 2019, it welcomed 3.65 million visitors. Since 2010, the Musée de l'Orangerie (On Concord Square) has been attached to the Musée d'Orsay, enriching its collection of Impressionists.

Localisation
Open hours

Museum and exhibitions

Open from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Open from 9:30 am to 9:45 pm on Thursdays.
Room evacuation from 5:15 p.m., 9:15 p.m. on Thursdays
Groups admitted by reservation only from Tuesday to Saturday from 9:30 am to 4 pm, until 8 pm on Thursday.

Closed every Monday and on May 1st and December 25th.

Special Corona virus

Attention : Due to the current curfew, the weekly night opening is suspended. The museum currently closes at 6pm on Thursday nights.

Exceptional opening

  • January 1st
  • Easter
  • Ascension
  • May 8th
  • Pentecost
  • July 14th
  • August 15th
  • November 1st
  • November 11th
Access
  • Métro - Line 12 - station Solférino
  • RER - Line C - station Musée d'Orsay
  • Bus - 63, 68, 69, 73, 83, 84, 94
  • Offre adaptée aux personnes en situation de handicap
Address

Musée d'Orsay
1 rue de la Légion d'Honneur
75007 Paris

Coordinates Latitude Longitude
Sexagesimal (°, ', ") 48° 51′ 36″ N 2° 19′ 41″ E
Degré décimal (GPS) 48.86045 2.32569
Reservation

For reservations ((highly recommended) at Musée d'Orsay, click here

General Rates and conditions

  • Free visit
  • Full price (museum + exhibition) : 16€ ;
  • Reduced price : 13€ (18-25 years old non-nationals and long-term non-residents of a European Union country, for all from 4:30 pm except Thursdays, from 6 pm).
  • Group visits: Reservations are required for all group visits, with or without a tour guide. Admission Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. Reservations by phone at +33 (0) 1 53 63 04 50 from Tuesday to Friday from 9:30 am to 2:45 pm.
  • Free : Free admission on the first Sunday of the month.
  • Free admission for European Union citizens under 26 years of age and teachers of primary and secondary schools (excluding temporary exhibitions).
  • Free admission for job seekers.
  • Free admission for Carte blanche and MuséO members, and members of the Société des amis du Musée d'Orsay.
  • School groups, social groups and groups of people with disabilities may visit the museum free of charge. Reservations can be made by filling in the online form.
  • Free for young people and children -under 18 years old
Full description

The Orsay Museum or a railroad station?

The history of the museum and its building are unusual. Located in the heart of Paris, along the Seine, facing the Tuileries Gardens, the museum is housed in the former Rail Road Orsay station. It was built for the Universal Exhibition of 1900. Thus the building is, in a way, the first "artwork" of the Musée d'Orsay's collections. You will not fail to be dazzled by the beauty of the place: a station with the appearance of a palace inaugurated for the Paris world exhibition of 1900.

The Orsay Museum presents the art between 1848 and 1914.

Note: the Musée de l'Orangerie (on the other bank of the Seine river) is attached since 2010 to the Musée d'Orsay.  An important collection of the Impressionists.

The Orsay Museum collections

The Orsay Museum is a multidisciplinary national museum that exhibits  6 collections:

  • Paintings, sculptures,
  • Decorative arts,
  • Photography,
  • Graphic arts,
  • and Architecture.

Opening of the Orsay Museum on 9 December 1986

It opened to the public on 9 December 1986. It is made up of national collections mainly from three institutions:

  • the Louvre Museum for the works of artists born from 1820 onwards, or emerging in the art world with the Second Republic (February 1848);
  • the Musée du Jeu de Paume, dedicated to Impressionism since 1947;
  • finally, the National Museum of Modern Art which, when it moved to the Centre Georges Pompidou in 1976, only kept works by artists born after 1870.

At the end of 2011, the museum reopened all of its spaces, completely renovated, and with new rooms: 400 additional square meters for the upstream pavilion, post-impressionist artists in the heart of the museum, the restructuring of the impressionist gallery, a new temporary exhibition space, not to mention the new "aquatic" decoration of the café des hauteurs entrusted to two Brazilian designers, the Campana Brothers

Orsay Museum, not only paintings!

The painting collection of the museum is very important and contains works of the Impressionists. You can see there numerous paintings of Cézanne, Courbet, Caillebotte, Daubigny, Daumier, Degas, Fantin-Latour, Gauguin, Ingres, Manet, Monet, Millet, Pissarro, Puvis de Chavannes, Renoir, Rousseau, dit le Douanier, Seurat, Sisley, Toulouse-Lautrec, Van Gogh, Vlaminck, etc.

In addition to the unique collection of paintings, the Musée d'Orsay presents 5 other exceptional collections: sculpture, decorative arts, photography, graphic arts, and architecture.

Recently acquired works include Manet, Gauguin, Caillebotte, Claudel, Moreau, and dozens of others.
Special mention to the Marlene and Spencer Hays donation of approximately 600 works from the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century to the Musée d'Orsay. This donation is exceptional in its size and coherence. It is the largest that French museums have received from a foreign donor since 1945. It will be carried out in several stages, the first of which involves 187 works.

The Orsay Museum in figures

Decorative arts

Since 1977, a collection of decorative art objects from the period 1848-1914 has been assembled for the Musée d'Orsay. It includes a number of masterpieces that had long been overlooked or misunderstood and also presents pieces that attest to the exceptional quality of the luxury industries of this period. The museography division of the objets d'art collections distinguishes, by their location, between those produced during the Second Empire (1852-1870) and the first two decades of the Third Republic (1870-1940) and those corresponding to the Art Nouveau style (from 1890).

Painting

The Musée d'Orsay exhibits and preserves the largest collection of Impressionist (more than 480 paintings) and Post-Impressionist (more than 600 Cloisonnist, Neo-Impressionist, Symbolist, and Nabis paintings) paintings in the world, as well as remarkable groups of paintings from the Barbizon School, realists, naturalists, orientalists, and academics, including paintings from foreign schools.

Sculpture

The sculpture collection includes 1,598 works, in addition to 676 deposits in France and abroad.

Photography

The Musée d'Orsay's photography collection, which was built up entirely from scratch from the late 1970s onwards, numbered 45,003 works at the end of 2020. When the project to transform the former Orsay station into a museum of the 19th century was taken, no fine arts museum in France had yet a section devoted to photography.

The works of many photographers are thus preserved in the collections of the Musée d'Orsay, including those of Hippolyte Bayard, Édouard Baldus, Christian Bérard, Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre, Céline Laguarde, Félix Nadar, Nicéphore Niépce and Constant Alexandre Famin.

How can I consult the works of the Musée d'Orsay on the Internet?

Click on "Catalogue du Musée d'Orsay" to consult the catalog and "History of the works" of the Musée d'Orsay. You can search by work, artist, discipline, place represented, the person represented, or place of conservation.

Of course, it is better to visit the Musée d'Orsay. Since March 2015, photography of the works exhibited in the museum is allowed, but taking pictures with a flash or a tripod is not allowed.

Orsay museum had 3.65 million visitors in 2019. Reservation in advance is strongly recommended by clicking on the Musée d'Orsay ticket office

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