Sunday, February 13, 2011

Église Réformée de l'Oratoire du Louvre


Église Réformée de l'Oratoire du Louvre is a majestic church filling the block between Rue de Rivoli and Rue Saint-Honoré. It is so large that it is difficult to get the whole church in a single shot. I was not able to go in this protestant church in December but will be back to see the inside.

Bon dimanche

145, rue Saint-Honoré

31 comments:

RICHARD MOISAN said...

Cette photo est intéressante, car c'est beau de voir l'éclairage des vitraux sur cette façade grise.
Bon dimanche, Genie!

Malyss said...

I like the way you took the picture: the light in the middle is so warm and attractive among the other cold colors..
Bon dimanche aussi!

Cezar and Léia said...

This is always "my kind of angle", I love your idea and composition!I feel as I could be there with you , by your side in the moment of capturing this picture!You are right to the adjective "majestic", this Church is very impressive, I'm enchanted by the tower and the lights!Looks like a cold day in December.
Thanks a lot my sweet friend Genie, I'm always delighted by your posts.
bises et bon dimanche
Léia

MARGARET GOSDEN 2 said...

I am very curious about the inside, whether or not anyone lives there and, if so, how do they keep warm!
The lighted window is certainly a wonderful focus for this otherwise very grey edifice!

M said...

Peut-etre we can attend services there some dimanche ... I am intrigued by the fact that the small, curtained windows are dark while the large, tower window is lit. It does evoke warmth. Lovely Sunday photo. Bises, ma chere amie.

Cynthia said...

Lovely, I love all the little tourrettes :)

Birdman said...

This is a mighty fine angle. The lighted alter area inside adds so much.

Harriet said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Harriet said...

Love the orange glow of the windows against what appears to be grey stone.

Thanks for pointing out this church. I would like to check it out on my next visit.

Alexa said...

Have to agree with the general consensus here—you did a fine job of capturing this imposing church!

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

Richard -- Certainement, c'était un jour de tempête et une façade grise... Merci!

Malyss -- I tried for several days as we passed this church to get a better view, but the distant shot was just "tourist" snap... Merci

Cezar and Léia -- You are so very kind, mes amis, and thank you for your kind comments... The towers are so very high and at least the light in the window off-sets that grayness

Margaret -- I have seen on-line photos of the inside of this church and from their website it is very active... I need to get in for some myself!

Marie -- I think that the curtained windows might be offices and the front windows in the forward tower are in another area of the church... Would love to attend services here with you as the organ is reputed to be fantastic!

Cynthia -- I do also and wonder if any of these areas are in use today...

Birdman -- Without the lights in the large windows (I cropped one out as the overhand I was standing under was not pretty on the right side) it would have just been a large gray monster of a building

Harriet -- Merci, and I need to see it from the inside... Let me know if you go inside... Several years ago Holly and I saw the back of the church with a large bouquet of flowers on the steps with a note. I posted that shot here: http://parisandbeyond-genie.blogspot.com/2010/09/flowers-left-on-church-step.html

Alexa -- It is obviously not as large as Notre Dame but the closeness of other buildings on the street(s) makes it look a bit too large for its space. Merci!

Ninny said...

It's so gothically beautiful....I can't even imagine touching something that old. What a great picture!

Liz

Peter said...

Your angle is very nice! I know, this church is often closed; tried several times and haven't yet been inside!

Randy said...

I love the angle of this shot. The light provides a perfect piece of warmth.

Halcyon said...

Not sure if I know this one. Will also have to check it out... someday!

Hope you are having a nice weekend. At least we are getting a little sun over here. :)

Miss Sadie said...

An intriguing shot, Genie — like part of a person's face. Looking forward to seeing the rest.

Starman said...

Here's the shot I took from rue de Rivoli - http://flic.kr/p/8NtWkx

Tammy@Beatrice Banks said...

Beautiful church! The lights of home are calling me! I think that's a song we used to sing in church. Love the glow in the window.

EG Wow said...

Wow! This structure is amazing! So many details!

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

Liz -- Yes, and I am itching to get inside!

Peter -- We will have to try to do that together on my next trip... I had already looked on your blog to see if you had "researched" it

Randy -- Merci... Without the light it would have looked quite cold and imposing

Halcyon -- Put this one on your list, mon amie... Yes, we got to 65 degrees and sunny today!

Duchess Sadie -- Merci, and that is a nice way of putting it... I will try to capture it fully next time

Starman -- Okay, my friend, you win the prize! You not only got the whole church but they asked your permission to put it on the church's official website - yay!

Tammy -- I think that you are right, my dear. There are not many protestant churches in Paris compared to all the Catholic ones. Glad that you like this

EG -- Yes, so many details, nooks and crannies... merci!

M said...

April in Paris -- we will be worshiping here!!

Amanda said...

lovely shot genie -- very brooding and imposing -- it has a real hunchback of notre dame feel to it!

p.s. word veri is: consur --- sounds french! ;-0

Jack said...

Beautiful, Genie. The light in the windows is everything. Marvelous.

Ola said...

With the light in the window it is like from a movie:)

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

What a gorgeous image - I love the lighting and the angle too. It makes me feel like I'm looking up at a magical castle awaiting someone to come out and say hello. I feel so nostalgic looking at this..

James said...

Beautiful shot. I love the combonation of the outside light and the light from inside.

J. Evan Kreider said...

Thanks for drawing attention to this church. Since I have not yet been inside a Protestant church in Paris, I am adding this one to my list of places to visit this May-June. The glazing promises that there will be good lighting on the interior.

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

Marie -- Bien-sûr!

Amanda -- I think that in this early evening winter light, "brooding" is an excellent desciption

Jack -- Without that light, I think that the building would disappear into the darkness

Ola -- Merci, mon amie

Brittany -- So many of the churches look like castles... great observation and Merci!

James -- With a better lens I might have gotten a better shot but overall was okay with this one... Merci

Evan -- The photos on the internet of the interior are wonderful so the light should be good for your excellent touch

K said...

Below is a link to photos of the interior and other things related to L'Église Réformée de l'Oratoire du Louvre. Though the photographer took a wonderful photo of this lackluster monolith, the photo says much more about the photographer's ability than the aesthetics of this church.  Do yourself a favor and be satisfied with the photo and the one's on the link below rather than waste your time on a visit.    

It's an uninteresting shell with a less fortunate interior.  The back, facing the rue de rivoli, is unique and from the rare perspective, (captured in this photo) it's even pleasing.  The facade couldn't be distinguished from a thousand other baroque facades throughout France and Italy. Though that's not saying much, as so many of those plain facades opened to reveal a jeweled interior, L'Oratoire du Louvre isn't so fortunate.  After seeing online photos and reading its skimpy online history some years ago I knew it was a place not to set time aside to visit.  However, I lived nearby and as I passed it countless times on my way to one place or another, I would occasionally check see if it was open.  I rarely spotted anyone coming or going.  One day I was lucky enough to be right in front as several people headed in and I followed them. I did a quick walk through and felt satisfied that I finally managed to slip in, but it was as I thought. In a city with so many truly amazing sites this is not one of them.  If your time is limited or even if it's not, look at the online photos and know you've saved some time.   

I skimmed wikipedia a minute ago and it's nearly a blank page. The monolith takes up more than half a city block. I believe it was once part of a Catholic monastery and it's over 350 years old. One might think something of historical importance happened here, but no one has bothered to make any documentation accessible online.  If you open the official site link it's not visiting information is actually discouraging.  It by appointment only from what I can tell. It doesn't try to be accommodating and that's understandable;  there's no there, there. If you're an architecture junkie and you're in the area then you'll be interested to walk around.  Below are the links I mentioned... 

Pics and history 

http://www.parisbestlodge.com/oratoire.html

official site:

http://oratoiredulouvre.fr/

That said, a few blocks down rue saint honore is the lovely baroque church of Saint-Roch. It's mostly intact despite the revolution, has plenty of interesting history and many photographs online. There are also a few notables entombed including: Corneille, Diderot and Louis XIV's daughter Marie Anne and more.  Definitely worth a trip, and a stroll down Rue Saint Honore is always a pleasure and if the door to L'Oratoire du Louvre happens to be open...        

http://peter-pho2.blogspot.com/2011/01/church-of-saint-roch.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Église_Saint-Roch

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

K -- Many thanks for your comments and research. I was frustrated with the lack of information on the internet and as you said even the official site was lacking, very unusual for a building over 350 years old...

St Roch is an absolute treasure and I took many photos both in and outside, having posted 4 already... I stayed in an apartment that looked onto this beautiful church and have found a wealth of information online

Please email me, if you will, with any additional suggestions for my next visit as the insider's view and knowledge is quite valuable when time is short (and it always is in Paris for me)... many thanks!

Marc Pernot said...

Thank you for this great picture and for your comments. I can answer to some of the mysteries.

Yes, the church is often closed, it is because of the protestant Calvinist theology that want that religion stays humble and rather discrete, to encourage each people to pray directly god in each room. The church is just a training for the faith and the personal reflection.
But the church is often open anyway, for concerts about one or twice a week at night, some Saturdays afternoon for weddings, and every Sunday morning we open the door at 9:30 for tourists so they have about one hour free for visiting before the time of the worship at 10:30.

That is right that we didn’t put enough material on our website about the building. We improved that recently here : http://oratoiredulouvre.fr/patrimoine it is brand new !

The little windows with the curtains are the sacristan’s home, he car with the church and help a lot for the services either materially and welcoming the public. This flat is nice but the rooms are rather tiny, built centuries ago in some chapels, the stairs between the three levels is the stair going to the top of the tower, very steep and circular.

The comment telling that the Oratoire is an empty shell is is not entirely false, as all the paintings and sculptures were destroyed in 1793 during the Revolution. But the Protestants do appreciate rather nude and simple but beautiful architecture. It is. But this comment telling that the inside of the oratoire is not interesting is cruel. Most of people find is astonishing, specially at night for concerts. But there are so many opinion & personal taste.