The Musée D'Orsey houses a vast collection of 19th and early 20th century artwork in a renovated railway station. By presenting the Impressionists with work that was more critically acclaimed at the time, you can truly grasp how radical and shocking painters like Monet, Degas and Renoir really were. The space is arranged so that you see the "popular" work first, (massive, finely painted depictions of gods and heroes intended to get attention at the yearly Salon) then head upstairs and find great contrast through the smaller scale, mundane subjects, vibrant colours and sometimes violent brushwork. With all this in mind, I found myself marvelling at Monet's "La Plage de Sainte Adresse"; he captured the breeze and smell of the day, while being totally cavalier when painting his chatting fishermen.
Today being Sunday, I checked out the Marché de Montreuil. This sprawling flea market is for champion rummagers. Huge piles of clothes for 2 or 3EUR need to be ransacked with a brave heart. This painting reminded me of Monet's fisherman so I talked the guy down and brought it home, only to discover that Jean-Pierre Guillier has done a very nice copy. Sure beats a postcard.