Monday, 6 June 2016

that famous staircase

m u s e e   g u s t a v e   m o r e a u

Usually when people come to Paris and I ask them what's on their list and what they want to see, I almost always get the same replies: the Eiffel tower, Champs Elysees and other famous landmarks. Not this time. Met up with 3 girls from London who were in town for the weekend, asked them over brunch what their plans were and got this answer: "that staircase" (and eating a lot of patisseries).

That's not a strange answer if you're on Instagram. It's also perfectly normal that I immediately knew which one they were talking about. More than just an app for sharing pictures, Instagram lets you share your obsessions. About tiles, doors, floors, flowers and the list is long. Don't even get me started on avocado toasts and coffee because we're here to talk about that staircase.

It's located in the Gustave Moreau museum in the 9th arrondissement of Paris where the painter lived and worked. Transforming the house into a museum was his last project before dying and even though he called it a "small, sentimental museum" he did leave about 25.000 pieces of art whereof 15.000 by him, so the collection is not exactly what I would call small.

You can visit both his private apartment as well as his studios located on the two upper floors. Salmon coloured walls, old wallpaper, faded tones, tired wooden floors, the recent renovation work has done a great job in keeping the original feel of the place. And a smell of old apples. Actually that's not quite true as I found out later when I got home and still couldn't get rid of the smell and finally remembered I had fresh yeast in my handbag, but it added an extra charm to the place.

And then there's the staircase of course, a very unique spiral staircase that Gustave Moreau's father - who was an architect - built.

Musee Gustave Moreau - 14 rue de la Rochefoucauld - 75009 Paris

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