Perfumes from the Orient at IMA, what a good surprise!

parisdiaArt, Happy moments2 Comments

Denis Dailleux, Picking roses in the heights of Moyen Atlas, Morocco, 2015

The exhibition “Parfums d’Orient” started at IMA (Institut du Monde Arabe) last September but I have to admit I forgot to go. When I heard an interview on the radio France Culture, of the wonderful “nose” of Givaudan, Christopher Sheldrake, I was mesmerized by the poetry of his speech. So I rushed to see the show and I really recommend it. The visitor navigates through images of Oman, Yémen, Egypt, Palestine, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Dubaï, Turkey, with a perfume in the galleries and you can smell anything you like by activating little buttons. It is a playful exhibition, which starts with pictures of rose picking by Denis Dailleux,  in Morocco and also a voyage through Oriental customs. The smells of cooking are present in a film by Nafas Immi, “In the kitchen with Mama”.Read More

I look forward to this spring…

parisdiaArt2 Comments

Lucas Cranach L’Ancien, “Vénus and Cupidon stealing honey”, 1531, (C) Rmn-Grand Palais, Fondation Bemberg, photo Mathieu Rabeau

While Musée d’Orsay has seen its figures of visitors climb to 5,1 million this year, Château de Chantilly has also increased up to 522 693 in 2023. Seeing the lines outside MAM and the Louvre, over the Christmas vacations in Paris, one is bewildered by the success of cultural tourism. For its tenth year of existence, Parisdiary will try to make you dream even more about Parisian artistic temptations. And here is what to expect in the Spring.

From 1 to 11 February, l’Opéra Comique will produce ” l’Autre voyage”,  lyrical moments on Franz Schubert’s music and texts by Heine, Goethe… Conducted by Raphael Pichon and directed by Silvia Costa, the show includes singers Stéphane Degout, Australian soprano Siobhan Stagg, Laurence Kilsby and Chad Lazeqr.  On February 2, Fondation Bemberg will reopen in Toulouse with its exceptional Bonnard collection after three years of works. The refined museum founded by collector Georges Bemberg in 1994, is definitely worth a trip.Read More

Bayonne and Biarritz always win my heart

parisdiaArt, Books, History3 Comments

The charming village of Bardos has a prestigious past and a superb view of the Pyrénées

Starting the year in Bayonne with the discovery of the Collection Gramont, newly repatriated in the reserves of Musée Basque was a true emotion. The curator, Olivier Ribeton, President of Société des Amis de la Collection Gramont, and Sabine Cazenave director of the Musée Basque et de l’Histoire de Bayonne, have worked jointly for this resurrection of the collection which should hopefully soon be published in a book. And this was the occasion for little excursions around the arrière pays of Labourd, where Jaques Bidart toured us around Bardos and Labastide-Clairence, and Etienne Rousseau Plotto, organist of the church of St André in Bayonne, gave me an organ recital and showed me around Ciboure where composer Maurice Ravel was born in 1875, and Socoa, with its fort by Vauban and a delightful lunch at Pantxua. After an excellent night at trendy Hotel Regina et du Golf, near the lighthouse of Biarritz and a little shopping at Laffargue in St Jean de Luz, my year started on a beautiful note.

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Psychoanalysis and art or Lacan’s world, at Pompidou Metz

parisdiaArt2 Comments

Shigeru Ban is the architect of Centre Pompidou Metz, photo Jacqueline Trichard

I love going to the Centre Pompidou Metz. Its playful architecture by Shigeru Ban always welcomes the visitor when he walks from the train station two minutes away, and the atmosphere was particularly festive on this December 31, when the very creative director, Chiara Parisi, decided to start her new exhibition “Lacan, l’Exposition” with an all day opening and a festive dinner of curators and lenders. We were all quite curious to find out how the psychoanalyst could be featured in an exhibition and knew that his “Origine du Monde” by Courbet would occupy a large space. I found that the show was more of a lexicon of important artists of the last fifty years, with Louise Bourgeois featuring prominently along Tatiana Trouvé, Maurizio Cattelan, Camille Henrot, Cindy Sherman, Wim Delvoye and François Morellet. The first two paintings I saw were by François Rouan and Caravaggio and this immediately reassured me. Francisco de Zurbaran and René Magritte also.Read More

Happy New Year 2024

parisdiaHappy moments8 Comments

The Ceiba,  in Uayamon, Campeche, Mexico, photo Graeme Clark

To celebrate the New Year we need a little optimism, and the beauty of nature helps greatly. Since our future depends on forests and trees, I have selected a few magnificent ones which I had never seen before. Here is a Mexican Ceiba, the sacred tree of the Maya, symbol of the universe, which is also known as the silk-cotton tree or Yax Che. It can grow up to 70 meters in height. Its fruit is harvested for kapok fiber to stuff mattresses and pillows. This tree can also be found in Angkor Wat. This particular one has a trunk of up to 3 m wide and the branches are bunched up at the top with an umbrella-like canopy which symbolizes the upper world and the thirteen levels in which the Maya heaven was divided…Read More

I look forward to… in January 2024!

parisdiaArt, Performing arts15 Comments

Simon Zhu, laureate of the Paganini Prize plays at the Louvre on January 23

I know you like to see in advance what is going to happen next year on the cultural front. So besides the Olympics which are going to cramm Paris from July 26 to August 11, there are many fun events starting in January. If you are a generous Friend of the Louvre, the gala concert featuring the laureate of  Premio Paganini, Simon Zhu, a young German violinist who plays with the Berlin Philarmonic Orchestra will take place on January 23 with Dutch pianist Gile Bae. it starts with a visit of the renovated Puget courtyard and the concert takes place in the Marly courtyard. Bach, Beethoven, Paganini and then Chopin are on the menu. It should be quite a fantastic moment.Read More

A quiet week in Paris!

parisdiaArt, Photography2 Comments

The very pretty Thalmann gallery was designed by Sophie Dries

The week has been quiet in Paris with a few discoveries. There is an excellent exhibition of Donald Sultan‘s new works “Mimosas”, at Galerie Andres Thalmann. Sultan‘s works are characterized by a combination of abstract, minimalist shapes and precise lines, creating a harmonious balance between figuration and abstraction. Vivid colours are just as much a part of his artistic signature as the use of unusual industrial materials such as tar, spackle, wooden floor panels, linoleum, and even coal. Sultan uses these materials to create visual tension in his often organic subjects. And teh contrast is fascinating. Read More

Merry Christmas a day late…

parisdiaHappy moments6 Comments

A Christmas table set by Danish artist Lin Utzon with plates and bowls she designed for Royal Copenhagen porcelain and one of her magical murals

I love it when readers send me their images and here are a few of them for Christmas. Lin Utzon, the Danish artist, is a painter, a sculptor and has created many designs for Royal Copenhagen which sadly does not exist anymore. Her whimsical set of porcelain with blue dots is perfect for the Christmas season as is her series of Hans Christian Andersen plates which she created for the Queen of Denmark to celebrate the writer’s two hundredth anniversary in 2005. She set this table in her house near Helsingør, North of Copenhagen, where she  celebrates Christmas with her family every year. Read More