Archive for November 4th, 2018

November 4, 2018

The Army museum of Paris!

Hello Paris, here I am ! cooler temps are coming tonite on All Saint’s Day (Toussaints) Nov 1st. I have my four day weekend lock up lol! In my belle France, let me tell you about another of its most important institutions, the Army Museum.

I have been here on a tour with business collegues many years back,and then came with the family but mostly we walk the beat and eaten in restos just around the corner in the Esplanade des Invalides.  Like the Café de l’Esplanade! I like to tell you the history of this venerable institution.

The musée de l’armée or Army Museum is a military museum located in the Hotel des Invalides in the 7éme arrondissement of Paris. This museum is served by the metro Invalides (line 13) and La Tour-Maubourg (line 8).Bus 93 leaves you close.  The museum was created in 1905 by the merger of the Artillery Museum and the Historical Army Museum, both of which were already located in the Invalides .

Below is the old version.

The Artillery museum was created under the French revolution and was installed at the Invalides in 1871. It was formed on two weapons collections: the collection of the Crown and the collection of princes of Condé. There were funds coming from the Louvre, the artillery of Vincennes, the Château de Pierrefonds and the acquisitions or donations. The Historical Army Museum was created in 1896 by the private company La Sabretache. The painter Édouard Detaille, who presided over it, owned his own collections and wanted to create a military museum similar to the retrospective halls of the Universal Exhibition of Paris of 1889.

The Arms and Armor section, which included the Joffre Gallery (fortifications and trenches), the Kléber Room (Oriental collections), the Massena Room (infantry), the Richelieu room (luxury weapons), the Douay Room (colonial infantry and armaments The Salle Murat (cavalry), the Salle Margueritte (cavalry of Africa, artillery and harnessing), the Salle Gribeauval (artillery), the gallery Pétain (Memories of the Great War (WWI), flags taken from the Germans) and the Galerie Foch (momentos of the allied armies). The Historical section, which included the Turenne hall or flag room (there were more than 700 flags or banners); La Salle Bugeaud (detailed collection: paintings, military costumes, weapons), the Salle Louis XIV (costumes and souvenirs of the former monarchy) The Napoleon Hall, La Fayette Hall, the Aumale Hall (colonial campaigns), the Mac Mahon Hall (Wars of 1825 – 1870), the Salle Chanzy (1870 – 1914), the Hall of Medals, the Salle Charlemagne (collection of Greek and Roman uniforms and Gauls), the salle of Assas, and La Salle la Tour d’Auvergne.

From the year 2000 an important renovation plan with the old weapons and armors department reopened in 2005, the Department of the two World Wars, between 2003 and 2006 and the modern department (from Louis XIV to Napoleon III) which opened its doors in 2010.   The Charles de Gaulle Historial, commissioned by the Charles de Gaulle Museum and Foundation, was inaugurated in February 2008. In 2015, the Museum of the Order of Liberation was totally rehabilitated and the museography completely redesigned. By 2015 opened a new permanent section within the museum, the unusual cabinets, consecrated in a first part to the military figurines including 5 000 small soldiers of cardbox, lead, tin and plastic models on a total of estimated 140 000: Artillery , which is one of the most important collections in the world, comprising 1 000 pieces from the 16C to the 19C and another part of the military musical instruments, selected from the 350 of the collection and the 30 deposited by the Museum of Music. In 2016, the Army museum launched a participatory financing operation with the aim of restoring ViZIER, the only naturalized horse of Napoleon I, who was exposed since 1904 in the modern department (from Louis XIV to Napoleon III). After a month of restoration,in 2015, the mounted horse has regained its original location in a new controlled atmosphere showcase to better preserve it.

The new version to follow:  Currently the Army museum is set up as such: The Museum extends on the east and west wings around the cour d’Honneur of the Invalides and on a wing to the west of the Church of St. Louis and the Historial de Gaulle, an underground construction under the cour de la Valeur (courtyard).

The museum today includes:

The ancient department, weapons and armors old 13C-17C, whose collection is the 3rd largest in the world, exhibited on 2 500 m2; the modern department, covering the period of Louis XIV to Napoleon III, period 1643 – 1870; the contemporary department, the two World Wars, period from 1871 to 1945; the Historial Charles-de-Gaulle, a multimedia space of 2 500 m2 which traces the life and work of Charles de Gaulle, mainly with audiovisual documents; the unusual cabinets, including a part on the old figurines and models of artillery pieces, and another part on the musical military instruments

Thematic departments:   The department of Paintings and Sculptures, Office of prints, drawings and photography. Research sites: The library, created in 1905 and restored in recent years; The photo library.

The Dome Church of Saint Louis.  Under the responsibility of the museum, it houses the burial of Napoleon I, his two brothers, his son (the Aiglon), the Marshals Vauban and Turenne, and the most recent of the Marshals Foch and Lyautey.

Two other museums are attached to the Army Museum:

The Museum of miniature models, (musée des Plansreliefs) consisting of models of fortified cities that trace 200 years of history and military strategies. It depends on the Ministry of Culture;

The Museum of the Order of Liberation, (musée de l’ordre de la Libération )created in 1967 and then renovated between 2012 and 2016, it is devoted to the order founded by de Gaulle in 1940 and to the Companions of the liberation. The collections are divided into three parts: free France, inner resistance and deportation.

Some webpages to help you plan your visit to the museum and it will have to be in your plans at least once, are

Official Army Museum

Tourist office of Paris on the Army Museum

Another view of my eternal Paris, so much to see its overwhelming, and this is just Paris. We heard or read the Movable Feast by Hemingway but I always though he was short, a second volume was in order, France is a movable feast!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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November 4, 2018

Little known ,but big in collections Cernuschi!

Once again, I come back to you on a little known museum in my eternal Paris and alas, never been inside either but I feel it merits mentioning in my blog and eventually I will get to see it too…promise.

I am talking about the Musée Cernuschi, by Parc Monceau. The weirdness in it is that on this park I have walk and walk and even did my first Vélib bike ride in it when it all started way back. Walked in front of the museum as can be seen by the picture, but darn it ,never been inside. No excuses.


Let me tell you a bit on it from my travel books and the tourist office of Paris.

The musée Cernuschi is a museum dedicated to Asian arts, and more specifically to those in the Far East: China, Japan, Korea and Vietnam. It is the second museum devoted to Asian arts in France and the fifth devoted to Chinese art in Europe.

This museum is originally created thanks to the bequest of the collections made in 1896 to the city of Paris by the financier Henri Cernuschi. Inaugurated in 1898, it is one of the oldest museums in the city. The museum is located in the former private mansion of the donor, Henri Cernuschi, near the Parc Monceau, at 7, Avenue Velasquez (8éme arrondissement). Built in a neoclassical style between 1873-1874. It is reach on metro Villiers lines 2 and 3.

From 2001 to 2005, the museum was completely renovated. It retains more than 12 000 works and is one of the five major collections of Chinese art in Europe. Rich in more than a thousand works, the Cernuschi Museum’s bronze collection is one of the most important in the world. It has a unique collection in Europe of painters representative of Imperial China under the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing dynasties (1644-1911), but also a beautiful set of modern Chinese paintings, from the first half of the 20C

More than 900 works are part of the permanent exhibition, devoted to Chinese art. But the most imposing piece visible in the museum is the Buddha of Meguro, an 18C Japanese bronze which is the monumental piece, in the center of the Museum, Room 54.

The museum also has Korean and Vietnamese collections of very high quality. The collections held in the museum’s reserves, mainly Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese but also Chinese, are presented in the context of temporary exhibitions.

A couple of webpages to help you plan your visit here are

Official City of Paris on the Cernuschi museum

Tourist office of Paris on the Cernuschi museum

There you go folks another dandy in Paris and I need to see it, especially since going more often lately to Asia (Philippines and Vietnam next before end of 2018).

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!



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