Dror Baron: Paris (August 2007)

Foucault's pendelum swings in the Pantheon. The pendulum swings in a plane that gradually shifts around during the day, providing a neat demonstration of physics.

The d'Orsay. museum is ultra-modern yet built within a rennovated train station. Here is a view of the main aisle of sculpture under the train station's arching ceiling.

The clock from the old train station has been preserved carefully.

Here is the Notre Dame cathedral in the afternoon sunlight. I took photos of the stained-glass windows, but unfortunately they did not get developed properly. Maybe the time for a digital SLR camera has arrived...

The main entrance to the Louvre is through a glass pyramid, which is surrounded by the older museum buildings.

There is also a smaller upside-down pyramid, whose structure can be seen here.

The collection is huge, and includes Egyptian sculpture, the coronation crown of Louis XV, a work by Michelangelo, and Venus of Milo.

The Middle Ages museum, which is quite close to the Notre Dame, has rather spooky looking heads of ancient French kings. There are also amazing tapestries of a lady with a unicorn, but the lighting did not enable me to take any photos.

The museum resides in a rather old dwelling, with fancy architectural features.

Versailles was a magnificent estate that Louis XIV constructed for his upscale residence (also known as a palace). Here is a chapel in the palace.

Although the palace was constructed during the monarchy, following the French revolution this replica of Napoleon was installed.

Besides the palace, the estate features beautiful gardens and many beautiful fountains. Here we see an interesting system of fountains that sprinkle on vegetation within a small amphi-theater. The effect is quite striking.

Here we see the palace in the background, while the gardens and striking water fountains appear in the foreground.

Many of the fountains involve sculptures of animals, mythological figures, etc. This must have been the state of the art when they were constructed. (Note that the fountains in this photo can be seen in the background right below the palace in the previous picture.)

The Pompidou Center houses various cultural collections, including a modern art museum. The external aspects of the building seem to hint at the modern content.

The Picasso museum has some nice collections, including this sculpture.

The Rodin museum contains many scultpures by Rodin, including the one below.

The war museum resides in the Invalides hotel. The museum contains many historic artifacts; here is a horse in full armor.

Cannons from different eras lean against the wall.

La Defense is a large business district, which extends the axis that runs from the Louvre to the Arc de Triomphe several more miles to the west. At the end of the complex is a sky-scraper with a grand arch in the middle. Here is a view from the top of the arch back toward the city.

And here is a view from the elevator going to the top of the arch in the opposite direction. The diverging highways suggest that the grand axis will not be lengthened further.

The vertical structure on the left of the grand arch itself is the tourist elevator.

The visit to La Defense can be completed by walking to the Arc de Triomphe.

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