Chaumont sur Loire, the castle and nothing else

 

Chaumont sur Loire, a castle with a park of sculptures

Chaumont sur Loire, a castle with a beautiful sculpture park and a smell of fresh hay

Chaumont sur Loire is a beautiful little village overlooking the Loire, not far from Chambord and Blois. Every year, an International Festival of gardens is organised in the park of the castle. And evey year I go. But for the first time, I was totally disenchanted by the festival which shows no new idea and no good design with the exception of Arthur de Vilmorin’s wicker and plant garden.

The castle dominates the Loire

The castle dominates the Loire

Read More

“Ceramix” in Sèvres and at La Maison rouge

 

Iranian artist, Bitar Fayyazi, Cockroaches, 1998-99

Iranian artist, Bitar Fayyazi, ceramic “Cockroaches”, 1998-99 (detail)

It is a very original project that Antonie de Galbert founder of  La Maison Rouge conceived with the Museum of Ceramics in Sèvres and the Bonnefanten Museum in Maastricht. To exhibit modern and contemporary ceramic sculptures made by famous artists. Ceramics or china as people call it everyday, is mostly used for plates and tea pots. But in 300 bc in Xian, China, and in Italian Renaissance, artists like Della Robbia already created ceramics sculptures.Read More

My Battle of Algiers by Ted Morgan

Ted Morgan at home, in New York

Pulitzer Prize winner Ted Morgan at home, in New York

He was called Sanche de Gramont then and was enrolled as a Frenchman in the army. But having been raised in New York, trained at Yale College and at Columbia school of journalism, he felt quite unconcerned by the French  Algerian independence war of 1956 -1957.

Read More

Mima, a museum in Molenbeek

Mima is located in an old brewery on the river, in Molenbeek

Mima is located in an old brewery on the river, in Molenbeek

Opening a private museum of contemporary art in Molenbeek, three weeks after the terrorist attacks in Brussels, is pretty daring, and Alice van den Abeele, the director, and Michel de Launoit the owner, could not contain their joy after the first day ; 2 500 visitors had been curious enough to come to MIMA (Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art) on April 15 th.
We were there the next day for a very nice slice of pizza from Mamma Pizza (apparently the chicest one in Brussels) and the lovely discovery of five American artists who had been selected for the first exhibition : « City Lights ».Read More

La Roche Guyon, a remarkable vegetable garden

A view of the c aster of La Roche Guyon from the garden with the 1é th century tower, ©Amand-Berteigne

A view of the castle of La Roche Guyon from the garden with the 12 th century tower, ©Amand-Berteigne

After seeing the amazing « Impressionist’s gardens » at the Royal Academy in London, last month, I have become curious of all garden exhibitions in Normandy and therefore went straight to the « Caillebotte, painter and gardner » show at Giverny’s Musée des Impressionistes (until July 3rd). Read More

Ohko Ishida, a sculptor of hats

Ohko Ishida was born in Paris and has become a sculptor of hats

One evening, I received a very excited phone call from art curator Daniel Marchesseau. He was standing in a gallery rue de Seine, in front of a myriad of sculptural straw hats and wanted me to come and see them straight away. Which I did of course the next morning. And here they are… « Le coup de chapeau », an exhibition of creations by Ohko Ishida is taking place at Galerie de l’Europe until May 7 th.Read More

Eva Jospin, a forest in the Louvre

The mirrors of the Panorama reflect the cour carrée of the Louvre

The mirrors of the Panorama reflect the cour carrée of the Louvre

For once, I was happy to have missed the opening of the show. Not only because my spies told me  it was packed and the cardboard forest “Panorama” created by Eva Jospin at the Louvre was hard to see. But mostly because when I went this morning, I was greeted by my name by the most ravishing creature, a young artist called Iris de Turckheim.Read More

The Laeken Royal greenhouses, amazing!

In the Winter garden, parties take place between columns and palm trees

In the Winter garden, Royal parties take place between columns and palm trees

The two hundred meter long geranium green house also has fuchsias dripping from the ceiling

The two hundred meter long geranium greenhouse also has fuchsias dripping from the ceiling

Once a year at the end of April and for three weeks only, the royal greenhouses of Laeken, are open to the public. I had never heard of them until a dear friend who recently setteld in Brussels, asked me to go with him. It was paradise for two hours. The sky was undecided but we headed for the Belgian royal palace anyway, happy to enter the mysterious universe, where King Philippe and his beautiful wife Queen Mathilde, raise their four children.Read More