|The 800 year history of the Louvre - first as fortress in 12th century Paris, then as palace to Louis XIV (before he moved to Versailles in 1678) and finally as one of the world's greatest art museums in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries - is a virtual history of France itself. You'll find the Masters' works here. From the antiquities to the avante-garde, explore and be amazed!|
"We strolled down the Paseo de la Castellana that warm April night. Past the Prado and the fountain, where the liquid reflections danced in your eyes. And I remember the city seemed alive around us."
Madrid, Ernest Fitzgerald, Jr.
If a city can be said to live, then the Prado Museum is the cultural heart of Madrid. Click on the "Visitas" icon ("Visits" if you select the English version) and take the guided tour. The collection includes works by El Greco, Velázquez, Caravaggio, and Goya.
|In 1764, Empress Catherine II purchased 225 Flemish & Dutch paintings for her winter palace at St. Petersburg. The Hermitage complex today includes five buildings that house over 16,000 paintings and 12,000 sculptures. By any measure, the Hermitage ranks as one of the great museums of the world. Click on "The Collection" and you'll find an on-line exhibition and analyses of works by Titian, Rembrandt, Renoir, Picasso and many others. Or click "Virtual Visit" and tour the exquisitely appointed rooms that house the various art collections. A visual feast!|