Musée d’Orsay Musée d’Orsay 2012 © Musée d’Orsay/Sophie Boegly

The Musée d’Orsay has one of the most unforgettable collections of art, ranging from the late 19th century to the early 20th century. The museum formed its collection in 1986 from works of art from three different museums–the Louvre, Musée du Jeu de Paume, and the former National Museum of Modern Art. The Orsay’s collection showcases a range of disciplines including Painting, Sculpture, Decorative Arts, Photography, Graphic Arts, and Architecture. Covering a period that begins with Ingres, a master of traditional line and form, it continues with Realist and Impressionist painting, and culminates in the experiments of the  fin de siècle, paving the way for the Avant-Garde movements of the 20th century.

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Getting There

1, rue de la Légion d’Honneur
75007 Paris

+33 (0)1 40 49 48 14

Metro: Solferino, line 12
RER C: Musée d’Orsay
Bus:  24, 63, 68, 69, 73, 83, 84, or 94

Hours / Tickets

9:30am – 6pm

9:30am – 9:45pm

Every Monday, May 1st & December 25th

AFMO members have unlimited, free access and early entry from 9am.

Admission to the museum including special exhibitions
Adults: 16€;
Children under 18 & EU Residents under 26 are free;
Free admission on the first Sunday of each month.


The Musée d’Orsay was originally built as a train station to bring visitors to the 1900 World’s Fair. Architect Victor Laloux built the Gare d’Orsay with modern features such as luggage ramps and elevators, as well as the 400-room adjacent Hotel d’Orsay. Laloux’s plan “dressed” the station’s exterior, covering it with white limestone to match the prestigious neighborhood and nearby Louvre palace. However, as technology advanced, the station’s platforms could no longer accommodate the larger, modern electric trains, subsequently causing the station to close in 1939. After a being used for a brief period at the end of World War II, the station fell into disuse. In the 1970s, a movement began to restore and preserve the magnificent building, designating it a historic monument in 1978.

Today’s museum was inaugurated in 1986 after President Valery Giscard authorized renovations, overseen by the French architectural firm Philippon, Colboc, and Bardon, and Italian architect Gae Aulenti. Though visitors can still see remains of the train station in the Grand Nave and the Restaurant, the museum has also seen recent modernizations. In 2016, the museum celebrated its 30th anniversary.