Grand Palais

I had been seeing posters in the metro advertising an exhibit at the Grand Palais of giant reliefs used since King Louis XIV until the late 1800’s so it was very clear about the layout of land and villages for defense-a three dimentional representation of domain. It was really interesting and I’m glad I got there before it closed as it ends this Sunday.

The Grand Palais, built in 1900 for a world’s fair, as you exit the metro.

The sign out front.

A look at the interior when you enter.

This shows a map of the Alps of France. Giant fortresses were built to try and prevent invasions.

Here’s a relief map showing an area with several fortresses and what they call the great wall of the Alps going up the ridge of a mountain.

I was amazed at the detail. Every house in each village was there as was every tree and field. A sign said that this particular relief had over 125,000 tree models of about ten different kinds of trees. It was important to know the landscape when building defense systems. Once man could fly and maps could be made these were no longer needed.

I wanted to show how enormous these relief maps were so show people around one. They had giant mirrors put up in some places too so you could get a good look at them.

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