PARIS (AP) — Paris fashion week opens up in style, with an exhibit that puts impressionist art down the runway.

The exhibit, called "Impressionism and Fashion," which opens Tuesday at the Musee d'Orsay, and will travel to the New York Metropolitan in February, explores how the late 19th century Impressionists made fashion one of the great painting themes.

In a spectacular touch, two of the exhibits nine rooms, are presented as modern runways, with seating assignments for 19th century figures such as poet Charles Baudelaire.

Instead of models on the mirrored catwalks, hang oil paintings by masters such as Manet and Monet.

"Strict crinoline had just been banished, liberating the woman's silhouette," said co-curator Philippe Thiebaut. "The impressionists used these new flowing fashions to capture the fleeting impressions of modern life."