posted on Friday, February 10, 2012

Fighting for Mona Lisa

After about 15 years and countless visits to Paris for work I had no excuse but make the most of the free museum entrance that happens on the first sunday of each month. Despite the polar temperatures of these days and the warning words of the hotel concierge I decided to have a go and see once more the most impressive art collection in the world. Warnings were mostly about the quantity of people that on free entrance day decide to do the same and visit museums, the fact that once the maximum number of entrances is reached the stop admitting people as well as the prospect of a long queue at sub zero temperatures. There was a final encouragement though, seeing how keen I was the wise concierge added that being february a low season if i didn't mind frostbite I had as good a chance to make it in.
So my decision paid off and after only 15 minutes of the coldest queue I have ever been on in I was ready to get wander and of course more than once lose my bearings and get lost in the vastness of the place. I was particularly pleased to be able to see the original still life works of Chardin and particularly the The Silver Goblet and the tiny but beautifully painted Still Life Of Cooking Utensils both of whom I had copied in my oil painting artistic days. Of course I stood for a long while staring at the Venus of Milo, such an amazing sculpture. As far as the Mona Lisa goes I was left fighting for life in a wild crowd of extended arms pointing cameras and mobile phones, so not so much luck there!