Orsay Museum, Paris

The Musée d’Orsay is one of the largest art museums in Europe. It is located on the Left Bank of the river Seine in Paris, France.

The museum has a grand view both from outside and the inside which is housed in the former Gare d’Orsay, a Beaux-Arts railway station built in late 19th century. It is easily accessible from central Paris. A 15-min walk from the Louvre or a scenic ride on a hop-on hop-off boat are two great options to reach it.

The Orsay museum holds mostly French art from mid 19th to early 20th century, including paintings, sculptures, furniture, and photography.

It houses the largest collection of impressionist and post-Impressionist masterpieces in the world, by painters including Monet, Manet, Degas, Renoir, Cézanne, Seurat, Gauguin, and Van Gogh. Below are a few of these great masterpieces.

Basilica di San Fedele, Como

Video blog about the oldest church in Como, Italy

The Basilica of San Fedele is the oldest church in Como, Italy . It is located in the city center and is dedicated to Saint Fidelis martyr. It derives from an earlier Christian church from the 7th century, dedicated to Euphemia.

We visited this ancient church as part of a walking tour in 2017 on a trip to Lake Como. The square facing the church is the oldest surviving area of the city dating back to Roman times in the 5th century.

Como was the birthplace of many historical figures in Roman times, including the poet Caecilius mentioned by Catullus in the 1st century BCE and writers Pliny the Elder and the Younger. The image below shows some of these historical figures depicted in the impressive front facade of the Como Cathedral, built in later medival period.

Later famous historical figures from Como include Pope Innocent XI, scientist Alessandro Volta, and Cosima Liszt, second wife of Richard Wagner and long-term director of the Bayreuth Festival.

Michelangelo’s David

We saw David during our visit to Galleria dell’Academia in Florence during Fall 2017.. The line to see World’s most famous sculpture went around the block. We were thankful to have made online reservations in advance. The clip below shows David up close.

David is a masterpiece of Renaissance sculpture. Michelangelo created the statue in marble between 1501 and 1504. David is a 5.17-metre (17.0 ft) marble statue of a standing male nude. The statue represents the Biblical hero David, a favoured subject in the art of Florence.

Saint Bartholomew Flayed

Video blog of the sculpture St Bartholomew Flayed

The following video clip shows the sculpture “Saint Bartholomew Flayed” in Milan Cathedral.

The sculpture was finished in 1562 by Marco d’Agrate. Its one of the stunning piece among many famous artworks in the cathedral. Its visceral yet calm posture is a testament to early days of the Christian faith. The saint shows his flayed skin thrown over his shoulders like a stole.

According to tradition, Saint Bartholomew was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. He travelled to India and Armenia to preach the word of God. He was brutally executed in Armenia.