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Paris: The City of Light and Love

“Paris is a moveable feast.” —Ernest Hemingway. Whether it is the love-locked Pont des Arts, lascivious Moulin Rouge, or simply the cobbled streets which join the two—see the Parisians who peopled the past.

Courtois frères (Paris, France). Cornet à pistons in B–flat, 1833. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Purchase, Amati Gifts, 2002 (2002.190a–n) | The cornet was invented in France in the 1820s as a valved version of the post horn. The instrument met immediate success and soon replaced keyed bugles as a favorite among audiences. #paris

Courtois frères | | The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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Charles Angrand (French, 1854–1926). Self–Portrait, 1892. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Robert Lehman Collection, 1975 (1975.1.566) | Charles Angrand was a visible presence in the Parisian avant-garde in the late 1880s and early 1890s. Here he presents himself, not at all as an artist, but as a bourgeois dandy, impeccably dressed and smoking a small cigar. #paris

Antoine Watteau (French, 1684–1721). The French Comedians, 1720–21. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. The Jules Bache Collection, 1949 (49.7.54) #paris

Henri de Toulouse–Lautrec (French, 1864–1901). The Seated Clowness (Mademoiselle Cha–u–Kao), 1896. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949 (49.55.50) | The success of Toulouse-Lautrec's posters advertising Parisian cabarets such as the Moulin Rouge led him to produce deluxe editions of prints of Montmartre's performers, such as this one of the clown and dancer Cha-u-Kao. #paris

Charles Meryon (French, 1821–1868). The Apse of Notre-Dame, Paris, 1854. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Bequest of Susan Dwight Bliss, 1966 (67.630.26) #paris

In this blog post, Keith Christiansen, John Pope-Hennessy Chairman of the Department of European Paintings, introduces Charles Le Brun's monumental portrait of Everhard Jabach and his family. | Charles Le Brun (French, 1619–1690). Everhard Jabach (1618–1695) and His Family, ca. 1660. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Purchase, Mrs. Charles Wrightsman Gift, 2014 (2014.250) #paris

Cachin, Françoise, Charles S. Moffett, and Juliet Wilson Bareau (1983). Manet, 1832–1883. | Édouard Manet, one of the greatest of all French artists, is celebrated in this sumptuous volume, the catalogue of the major retrospective held in Paris and New York in honor of the centenary of his death. It represents the most complete gathering of Manet's work since the memorial exhibition at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1884. Preview this out-of-print Met publication online. #paris

Étienne Carjat (French, 1828–1906). Charles Baudelaire, ca. 1863. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. The Elisha Whittelsey Collection, The Elisha Whittelsey Fund, 1964 (64.677.4) | This striking portrait of the brooding poet Charles Baudelaire was published in the series “Galerie contemporaine, littéraire, artistique,” which contained 241 portraits of leading figures from the worlds of art, literature, music, science, and politics by a host of Parisian photographers. #paris

Nicolas Antoine Taunay (French, 1755–1830). The Billiard Room, ca. 1808. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.The Jack and Belle Linsky Collection, 1982 (1982.60.49) | This is the only painting by Taunay in the Metropolitan, and it exemplifies the artist's preference for depicting genre subjects and working on a small scale. This scene featuring all male figures unfolds in a game room or club, which were popular in Paris at the time. #paris

Edgar Degas (French, 1834–1917). At the Milliner's, 1881. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. The Walter H. and Leonore Annenberg Collection, Gift of Walter H. and Leonore Annenberg, 1997, Bequest of Walter H. Annenberg, 2002 (1997.391.1) #paris

Edgar Degas | At the Milliner's | The Metropolitan Museum of Art

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Dubois & Couturier (French, active before 1829–1837). Cor solo, 1829. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Purchase, Robert Alonzo Lehman Bequest, 2008 (2008.136) | Only a few shops, most of them in Lyon and Paris, were able to build excellent, easy-speaking cors solo with refined workmanship and balanced sound qualities. #paris

Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (French, 1780–1867) and Workshop. Odalisque in Grisaille, ca. 1824–34. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Collection, Wolfe Fund, 1938 (38.65) | Ingres cited it in a list of works he executed in Paris between 1824 and 1834, a period bracketed by lengthy sojourns in Italy. #paris

Henri de Toulouse–Lautrec (French, 1864–1901). Divan Japonais, 1892–93. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Bequest of Clifford A. Furst, 1958 (58.621.17) | Divan Japonais was one of the many café-concerts in late nineteenth-century Paris frequented by Toulouse-Lautrec. #paris

Eugène Atget (French, 1857–1927). Avenue des Gobelins, 1917. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Purchase, Rogers Fund and Joyce and Robert Menschel and Harriette and Noel Levine Gifts, 1994 (1994.271) | It was for the type of transforming vision seen in this picture, which is among the very last in Atget's lifelong exploration of Paris, that the artist's work was so enthusiastically embraced by the Surrealists. #paris

Edgar Degas (French, 1834–1917). Portraits at the Stock Exchange, ca. 1878–79.The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Janice H. Levin, 1991 (1991.277.1). | This study for an oil painting by Degas of 1878–79 (Musée d'Orsay, Paris) depicts the financier and collector Ernest May (1845–1925) under the portico of the Paris stock exchange. #paris

Boiserie from the Hôtel Lauzun, ca. 1770, with one modern panel. French (Paris). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Purchase, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Wrightsman Gift, 1976 (1976.91.1)

John Woodrow Wilson (American, born 1922). Paris Rooftops, 1949. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Reba and Dave Williams, 1999 (1999.529.197) #paris

Hippolyte Petitjean (French, 1854–1929). The Pont Neuf, ca. 1912–14. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Robert Lehman Collection, 1975 (1975.1.681) | This delicate pointillist sheet, glistening with light, was made along the Seine, looking downriver through the arches of the Pont Neuf toward the bathing cabins and trees by the place Henri IV. The Pont Neuf is the oldest bridge in Paris. #paris

Charles Marville, (French, 1813–1879). Lamppost, Entrance to the École des Beaux-Arts, ca. 1870. Collection W. Bruce and Delaney H. Lundberg | This photograph is featured in "Charles Marville: Photographer of Paris," on view through May 4, 2014. #paris

Marie Victoire Lemoine (French, 1754–1820). The Interior of an Atelier of a Woman Painter, 1796. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Mrs. Thorneycroft Ryle, 1957 (57.103) | The most important exhibitions in eighteenth-century Paris were the Salons, in general held every other year, and open only to artists associated with the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture. #paris

Jean-Baptiste-Claude Sené (1748–1803). Set of furniture (daybed, armchair, and fire screen), 1788. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Ann Payne Blumenthal, 1941 (41.205.1–.3a, b) #paris

Adélaïde Labille-Guiard (French, 1749–1803). Self-Portrait with Two Pupils, Marie Gabrielle Capet (1761–1818) and Marie Marguerite Carreaux de Rosemond (died 1788), 1785. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Julia A. Berwind, 1953 (53.225.5) | In 1783, when admitted to the French Académie Royale, the number of women artists eligible for membership was limited to four. #paris

Marie-Charles-Isidore Choiselat, (French, 1815–1858) and Stanislas Ratel, (French, 1824–1904). Défilé sur le Pont-Royal, May 1st 1844. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gilman Collection, Gift of The Howard Gilman Foundation, 2005 (2005.100.185) | This photograph is featured in "Paris as Muse: Photography, 1840s–1930s," on view through May 4, 2014. #paris

The Metropolitan Museum of Art - Défilé sur le Pont-Royal

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Auguste Renoir, (French, 1841–1919). Madame Georges Charpentier (née Marguérite–Louise Lemonnier, 1848–1904) and Her Children, Georgette–Berthe (1872–1945) and Paul–Émile–Charles (1875–1895), 1878. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Collection, Wolfe Fund, 1907 (07.122) | In the Japanese-style sitting room of her Parisian townhouse—the décor and chic gown testifying to her stylish taste—Marguerite Charpentier sits beside her son, Paul. #paris