Versailles and L’Opera Garnier-
Two different buildings, but SO MUCH GOLD!!! It was very interesting to visit the two and compare them. At first, one would think that they are very similar, in their endeavors to see and be seen. And while they are both beautiful, gilded buildings, they couldn’t have more different feels to them.
Versailles is so big it is almost impossible to comprehend it all at once. Unfortunately, the part open to the public is so small and packed with people that the immense scale is almost completely disregarded. What is view-able by the public is completely overdone to the point that it just feels silly. The sheer number of people packed into the building makes it very difficult to appreciate the grandeur and spectacle that is Versailles. Another horribly annoying thing about the palace was the seemingly random placement of modern art works. While I understand that Versailles is supposed to be functioning as a museum and that the modern art may be an attempt to keep the museum relevant; I always thought of the palace as more of a historic house museum, and less of an art museum. In my opinion, the modern art took away for the reverence of the place. It seemed disrespectful and unnecessary to me.
L’Opera Garnier also suffered from an unusual case of modern art, although not nearly to the degree that Versailles did. The inside of the building was absolutely breathtaking; gilded and detailed in every possible place. Many different colors of marble were used throughout, as well as massive amounts of gold leaf. However, unlike in Versailles, the gold did not feel gaudy or overwhelming. Instead, it gave the building a very upscale feel, in a comfortable way. The lighting consisted almost entirely of candle bulbs. This, in conjunction with the warm colors used throughout the interior exuded a warm and welcoming atmosphere. I found the opera to be a very comfortable and friendly place. I did not feel out of place and nervous as I did in Versailles. It was beautiful, I loved it, and if I could spend hours there every day I would.