Monday, January 25


Bound and determined to see Degas' Little Fourteen Year Old Dancer, we headed to The Musee d'Orsay they next day. Eva became interested in this statue after she brought home this book from her school library. The book tells the story of Marie Van Goethem, a ballet student at École de Danse in Paris in the late 1800s. Marie began to pose for Degas to earn money to pay for her dance lessons. The result of all those hours of posing was the statue. Degas dressed his statue of Marie in her ballet uniform, including the peach ribbon she had tied in her hair. This was the detail that most intrigued Eva - her ribbon, her "real" clothes. It was interesting to watch Eva try and make that connection between the book, a young girl she could relate to, history, something famous, and something she could actually see. Yes, we saw the real ribbon that was really hers*.

Audrey got caught up in the excitement too. Although she listened to the book too she didn't really get it. She just had fun going around the sculpture saying, Degas?!?! Where's Degas? This Degas? Mom, look it's Degas!!

The book said that the statue was housed in the Louvre. But as we discovered, it's NOT!! As the Louvre guard told me, "All impressionist work is in the Orsay. " Now you know too. BTW, books are a great way to get kids excited about traveling. This book is wonderful too. We got Eva this one for her birthday as well as her own copy of Degas and the Little Dancer.

What are your favorite books about art/travel for kids?
I'd love to compile and share a list.

*There were 7-8 Marie statues cast. I don't know where the real, real, real one is housed with her real uniform and bow. But this detail didn't seem important to share with Eva.

The 2 pictures in this post were taken by our friend Jenn. Most of mine were blurry or strange. I think I was over excited too. Ha!


Mama Llama said...

How fun! I love it when things become "real" for my son (and for me!)

I believe the original statue is in Washington, D.C. @ the...National Gallery? Maybe?

likeschocolate said...

What a wonderful learning experience!!!!

Dim Sum, Bagels, and Crawfish said...

Fabulous! And we'll be adding that book to our Paris collection soon...thanks for the recommendation. Two of our favorite Paris books:

Adele and Simon
La La Rose

I am sure your girls will get a kick out of them if they haven't read them already because so many of the sites will be familiar to them.

I agree with you 100% ...books are a great way to get kids (and adults, too!) excited about traveling.

One of my dream destinations is Prince Edward Island thanks to Anne of Green Gables!

Dana said...

Ohhh..... a favorite here is The Hinky Pink -- set in Florence. Pippo the Fool is also wonderful fir Florence. I keep hoping to write a review of it ... But it's just not happening right now.

katy said...

Dim Sum and Dana - Thank you for the book recommendations. I haven't heard of any of those!! Do you guys know we (those of us in the EU) can get free shipping from yup.

Unknown said...

Ugh, I love seeing all the pictures from Paris, but it makes me miss it too much. My daughter loves Barbapapa books. Not really travel or art books, but French and fun. We also like Babar. There is one about an art museum and one where they travel to the USA and see tons of landmarks. A Spree in Paree is fun as well. This is Paris will always be my favorite though.

Xenos said...

I've seen another copy at the Clarke Art Museum in Williamstown, MA.

According to that the book at that link there were more like 30 copies made.

Not my favorite impressionist, though. See any good Cassat?

Juleskis said...

AWWWEEEE! I read that book to her while I was there! :) I am glad she has her own own copy now! :)

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