Running around and enjoying it…

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Marc Boisseuil with his precious boxes and patchworks at Pierre Passebon until December 3

I was very happy at the prospect of seeing Marc Boisseuil‘s new boxes at Pierre Passebon‘s and when I spotted a huge crowd in galerie Vero Dodat, I was a bit surprised… Well there were two openings at the same time and the other one was of actress Isabelle Adjani‘s dresses in her period films like La Reine Margot and Marie Stuart. The drawings and pictures were very pretty but I personally fell for the boxes made of straw and covered in patchworks of old textiles. A super refined Christmas present for your Fifth avenue coffee table.Read More

French American friendship is celebrated at Cité de l’Architecture

parisdiaarchitecture, Art, History1 Comment

Alfred Courmes, Portrait of Peggy Guggenheim, August 1926, Blérancourt, musée franco américain

At Palais de Chaillot’s Cité de l’Architecture, a very specialized exhibition “Art Déco, France and Northern America” studies the architectural and artistic relationships between the 1890’s and 1930’s. It starts with Pierre Charles L’Enfant‘s plan for Washington D.C. commissioned by George Washington in 1891, and the tribute paid to “The adopted French architect” by an elegant table on baluster legs created by William Welles Bosworth at Arlington Cemetery in 1909. This gesture sealed the “constructive” friendship between the two nations. Bosworth became later the architect of the MIT campus in Boston and a key person in bringing the two cultures together. He adored France, and like hundreds of other Americans, studied at Ecole des Beaux Arts. He was instrumental in the restoration of Reims Cathedral and Versailles and for the creation of the School of Fine Arts at Fontainebleau, opened in 1923, all operations under John D. Rockefeller’s patronage.Read More

A double bill at Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson starts Paris photo week

parisdiaHappy moments, photography1 Comment

Friday night was a major evening at Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson rue des Archives, when privileged guests could discover the new premises after two years of renovation and with two exhibitions. Jan Groover, the long lost American photographer who loved France, on the main floor, and downstairs, in the new vaulted gallery, “Henri Cartier-Bresson /Martin Parr, the Reconciliation”. The reason everyone was there, was to the celebrate Tatyana Franck, 38, who was honored by Laurence des Cars, President of the Louvre with a medal of Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres. The crowd was chic and young, many Swiss collectors had made the trip from Geneva, Lausanne and Gstaad, and since Tatyana now runs the FIAF (French Institute Alliance Française) in New York, members of the board were there as well as her predecessor Marie-Monique Steckel, seated in the front row. The atmosphere was friendly and Pol Roger champagne flowed. Read More

David Hockney is great again at Lelong & Co.

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20 March, 2021, Flowers, Glass Vase on a Table, iPad painting printed on paper, Edition of 50, © David Hockney / Courtesy Galerie Lelong & Co.

Last Thursday was he first rainy and cold day of the autumn and visiting the new exhibition of flowers and landscapes by David Hockney, at the two Lelong & Co. galleries in the 8 th, was a very welcome happy and sunny moment. The British artist, who still lives secluded in Normandy, away from the big cities where collectors and gallerists disturb him too much,  is now 85 and still super active. His French merchant, Jean Frémon, who is also a neighbor, was telling how the idea for the show came up. In February 2021, Hockney caught site of some flowers in a vase and noticed a deep shadow on the table from the low winter sun. He decided to draw it and print it. He liked what he saw when he hung it on the wall of his studio and showed him a few. Now he has completed twenty which are printed in an edition of 50. They sell in London, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York on top of Paris, for 55 000€ and are all sold out.  But, don’t be too sad, you can still buy the catalog for 30€ and it is wonderful…Read More

In Versailles, Louis XV’s world is very conventional but superb

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The Engineer Passemant’s Astronomical clock, took 35 years to make with clockmaker Dauthiau. Bronzes are by Cafffiéri. It was installed in Versailles in 1754 where a special drawing room is still dedicated to it. It was restored by Rolex

It was particularly difficult to access château de Versailles this time because of school vacations and even though we had booked tickets, the line to enter the castle was going all the way to the main gate… So be prepared. But once inside, the magic of the Sun King always operates even though we were there to discover his great grand son’s Louis XV’th world. The decor is very classical and most rooms predictable except for two spectacular spaces, the corridor with the “Exotic hunts” by François Boucher, Charles Parrocel,  Carle Vanloo, Jean François de Troy, Nicolas Lancret and Jean Baptiste Pater, which were commissioned for Versailles’ little gallery in 1735. Interestingly they were war scene painters not animal specialists. The other fabulous room is the last one with the famous commode by Antoine-Robert Gaudreaus and Jacques Caffiéri delivered for the king’s bedroom in 1739. It was exceptionally lent by the Wallace collection (along a family painting by Largillière) and sits on a large carpet designed by Gravelot and Tessier and woven by la Manufacture de la Savonnerie.Read More

Joan Mitchell reflects Monet’s waterlilies in Bois de Boulogne and Barcelo uses Grisaille in Pantin

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Joan Mitchell, “Row Row”, 1982, Fondation Louis Vuitton Paris

It is a double exhibition which is presented at Fondation Louis Vuitton in the Bois de Boulogne. A retrospective of 50 of  Joan Mitchell‘s works which was first in the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and at the Baltimore Museum of Art and has been added on with paintings from Monastère de Brou and Centre Pompidou for Paris. And on the three upper floors, is a confrontation of Monet’s last waterlilies with Joan Mitchell’s works in Vétheuil (located 18 kms from Giverny), an exhibition co-organized by Musée Marmottan Monet (who lent 25 works) and the Foundation. A double team is also at the origin of these two shows, Suzanne Pagé and Angeline Scherf, who worked with her since 1988, at the Museum of Modern Art Paris. In Pantin, Miquel Barcelo occupies the large space of the Thaddaeus Ropac gallery with his “grisailles”. Both venues are so large that works become more gigantic from the way they hang. It is both very powerful and sometimes overwhelming.Read More

In Ecouen, coats of arm speak up

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The ceiling of the chapel with Anne de Montmorency’s initials

Every time I travel to château d’Ecouen, a 50 mn drive through St Denis and Sarcelles, I have the same emotion in anticipation of all the beauties this Museum of Renaissance conceals. This time, the new exhibition called “Le Blason des Temps Nouveaux” (The coat of arms of Modern Times) is even more mysterious than previous ones. And it needed all the charm and erudition of the curators to keep our attention on the details of medieval heraldic. Ecouen which was owned by Anne de Montmorency is full of these signs sculpted or painted on fireplaces, walls and stained glass windows. For the first time I realized that coats of arms were like a painter’s signature at the bottom of a frame… The chapel is the first step to the show, with the copy of Leonardo’s “Last supper” by Marco d’Oggiono, which was commissioned in 1506 by Gabriel Gouffier, whose coat of arms figures on the bottom. Read More

The Salon du Patrimoine Culturel is more ebullient than ever.

parisdiaarchitecture, Art, Technique1 Comment

Paulina Okurowska works with slate in Nantes

I am always full of expectations when I go to Carrousel du Louvre for the annual meeting of Salon du Patrimoine culturel, a fair devoted to the artisans who cater to castle owners and public monuments and mostly a mine of good addresses. And there are quite a few booths with pictures of Notre Dame, the Grand Palais and Versailles to prove that their craftsmanship has been selected by prestigious establishments. Gilders, carpenters, window makers, tiles and slates are all exhibited and described at length in this space located within the Louvre where Fine Arts Paris & la Biennale will take place on November 8.Read More