More news from confinement

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Sharing a drink from Garrison’s pool in Maribago, on Mactan Island in Cebu, one of the 700 islands of Philippines

While Garrison Rousseau is happily having a drink by his pool on Mactan Island in Cebu, Nicky Vreeland, continues his recording in black and white of the Tibetan monastery in Southern India, which he runs and  where he is confined. The Monastery is called Rato Dratsang and is located in Mundgod, in  Karnataka. Nicky, the grand son of Vogue editor Diana Vreeland,  apprenticed with Richard Avedon in New York in the 1970’s and is now the abbot of the monastery, a fully ordained Tibetan monk, dedicating his photographic skills to his people. You can see and buy his photographs on lineRead More

Two recipes this week, Oeufs à la tripe and Antiviral soup by Charles Kaiser

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Oeufs à la tripe is a family recipe with eggs and onions

I bought this pretty dish in a thrift shop in Kent while playing golf at Walton Heath. It is called “oven to table”, a name I love for its practicality… And it is the perfect receptacle for “oeufs à la tripe”, a very cheap and simple dish that anyone can make even in our times of confinement. It is one of my family’s favorite Saturday night dish, similar to US’ macaroni and cheese. Read More

A poem on Paris by Henri Cole

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Henri Cole in the Luxembourg gardens

Born in Fukuoka, Japan in 1956, from a French-Armenian mother and an American father, Henri Cole has taught poetry at the University of Ohio, Harvard and Yale. He currently lives in Boston but teaches at Claremont McKenna college in California. He travels to Paris three or four times a year for a fortnight and this is where he likes to write and would be confined if he’d had a flight to travel here. He has kindly offered to all of us a poem, “Paris is my Seroquel“, which will appear in his tenth book “Blizzard” to be published in September by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. It had originally appeared in ” Poems of Paris” published last year by Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets.Read More

My daily confinement

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The chestnut trees are burgeoning and I watch them everyday from my kitchen window

Since the beginning of the week, I have been watching the chestnut trees burgeoning. It is an unequaled pleasure. Prisoners always mention that they loose track of time. This has happened to me of course and I mix days since I have no appointments. I keep a routine of listening to France Culture and France Musique radio stations which have developed clever ways of transmitting without hardly any staff on duty except for the news. Most reporters speak from their homes thanks to electronic devices. I am also obsessed with smells and cleanliness and make a point of walking everyday around the block. And walking up the five floors!Read More

News from around the world

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Marc Riboud, “Bal à Beida”, Beijing University, 1957, at Galerie Polka Paris © Marc Riboud

The great advantage of this Pandemic (if any), is that everyone calls each other and speaks out. And the greatest news of the day is the publication on March 23 (yesterday) of Woody Allen’s Memoirs: “Apropos of Nothing”. I remember Woody announcing to me in 1987, that Mia was pregnant. He was stunned at the time because she had supposedly been told by her gynecologist that she could not have children anymore… Anyway, it seems that the truth will at last be heard and this is thanks to Jeannette Seaver, the publisher of Arcade books, which was from 1988 until the death of its founder Dick Seaver in 2008, one of the greatest small publishing houses in New York. I met them very early on, because Jeannette is French and she always had a weakness for our country. Arcade editor Jeannette Seaver said in a statement: “In this strange time, when truth is too often dismissed as ‘fake news,’ we as publishers prefer to give voice to a respected artist, rather than bow to those determined to silence him.”

Richard Seaver made himself a name for publishing Beckett and Ionesco first in the United States in the Merlin quarterly braving the then censorship. He went on to publish Genet, Pinter and Miller at Grove Press. It makes so much sense that Woody Allen should now be published by Jeannette, at a time when Maccarthyism has resumed in the US (as Woody calls the MeToo movement). It seems that “Apropos of Nothing” cannot be ordered in France yet. So if you find a copy, please send it to me… And for the time being I will have to be happy with the page six excerpts sent by my dear friend Charles Kaiser.

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A recipe a week: aillade de veau

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L’aillade de veau by Agathe Velay in Lot et Garonne

There is no need to write about restaurants at the moment, and yet it is important to keep eating well and to share cooking moments with your dear ones. I know that you love seeing food in these pages, so I will send you an easy recipe every week which you can prepare and feel like you are in deep France. The first one was sent by my niece Marguerite Velay who, instead of  traveling to Saint Galen in Switzerland over the week-end, to Paris and Lausanne for her firm Easilys, which gives IT services to restaurants and hotels, is cooking with sister in law Agathe Velay in Lot et Garonne. The family house in Monflanquin, is surrounded by fields, in the area between Bergerac and Villeneuve Sur Lot, north of Agen, the town famous for its prunes. Read More

Agnès b moves East to the Grande Bibliothèque

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Agnès b at 78, wearing her famous best selling cardigan

The opening of la fab on place Jean-Michel Basquiat was a festive yet discreet event. Designer Agnès b (the b comes from Christian Bourgois, her first husband), had always wanted to be a museum curator since she studied at Ecole du Louvre, but her successful career was achieved in casual ready to wear. The inventor of the famous cardigan with “pressions”, whose second husband Jean René de Fleurieu developed the distribution in Japan in the 1980’s, has now opened her own art center with a plan to exhibit progressively her 5 000 piece collection in the 700 square meters gallery. The first show ” La hardiesse” (boldness) includes some paintings by Gilbert & George, Jean Michel Basquiat, Pierre Klossowski, ceramics by Johan Creten, photographs by Malick Sidibé… her all time favorites.Read More