Shrove Tuesday with star butchers

Women were being honored at Académie du Mardi gras

Women were being honored on the invitation of Académie du Mardi gras

It was just too tempting to be missed and so I crossed Paris from west to east under a violent rain storm, in order to see Stéphane Layani, President of the Rungis market, be honored with the Prix de l’Académie du Mardi Gras (Shrove Tuesday’s Academy prize), a prize given for the past five years to a personality who helps traditional French butchery. Shrove Tuesday was traditionally, in the Christian religion,  the last day when you could eat meat before lent. The invitation showed a lady butcher, but the room at Ecole Nationale supérieure des Métiers de la viande, was filled with men who were all presidents of some special food academy.Read More

Versailles in Arras, the great surprise!

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“Apollon servi par les nymphes et les Chevaux du Soleil”, marbre  by François Girardon and Thomas Regnaudin, ©D-Saulnier

Everything was a huge surprise in the city of Arras where I went after having  heard of the exhibition « Arras vous fait la cour » (Arras courts you ) of 100 chefs d’œuvres lent by Versailles. As always, it is hard to lead Parisians to the French provinces and the two hour drive to this northern city of Picardie was so easy and so pleasant that I intend to go back for a few days to see more museums.

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A marble statue of Louis XIV by Varin in a decor of Escalier des Ambassadeurs

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“Spotlight” a true chef d’oeuvre

 

The new editor of the Boston Glove shakes everyone around

The new editor of the Boston Globe, Marty Baron, (Liev Schreiber) shakes everyone around. He is now the executive editor of the Washington Post

If you have not seen this film yet, rush, you don’t have a choice! It is the most exciting, well written script and psychologically well tuned film I have seen for a long time. It only came out last week in Paris and it has become the word of mouth tip since. Everything is bright about it. The characters are unbelievably subtle, with their qualities and their faults, the acting is at its best with Michael Keaton and Mark Ruffalo and Boston is a fun city to spend two hours in.Read More

Jean-Baptiste Huet, the nephew…

Un loup percé d'une lance, 1771,© David Rase

Un loup percé d’une lance, 1771, © David Rase

Musée Cognacq-Jay is one of those hidden treasures in the Marais that would remain unknown if it wasn’t for its special exhibitions. These are sometimes cramped in the little 16 th century rooms of Hotel de Donon, where Ernest Cognacq (1839-1928), the founder of La Samaritaine’s, collection of china and  antique furniture and paintings is exhibited, but curator Benjamin Couilleaux found the perfect topic this time, and the Jean-Baptiste Huet’s country paintings are a huge pleasure to discover.`Read More

My favorite Happy New Year cards

One says that January 31st is the last day for sending good wishes for the New Year, so here are my favorite cards this year and I am happy to share them with you!

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From Mexico City, the most colorful  table decoration by Gérard Fontaine

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African art at its best, just around the corner

Akan-Ghana, Head, terra cotta, 18 th century

Akan-Ghana, Head, terra cotta, 18 th century

Because I know nothing about African art, I always concentrate on the aesthetically beauty of sculptures and masks I discover, and Musée Dapper is a perfect showcase for such pleasures. The exhibition, « Chefs d’œuvre d’Afrique » is a tribute to the museum’s founder, Michel Leveau, an engineer who spent his life in Africa and collected top pieces in African art with his wife Christiane (born in Cayenne, Guyana).Read More

Wall paper, fabric, decorative arts

Wallpapers are exhibited thematically and were made over four centuries

Wallpapers are exhibited thematically and date back to four centuries ago

 

The visitor has to be pretty motivated to find out about wall papers and fabrics in this exhibition located on two floors at Musée des Art Décoratifs. The explanations printed in gold on the walls are unreadable because of the lighting, and there are no captions anywhere to be seen. If you are lucky enough to grab an explanation sheet, you then have a hard time connecting them to the art! So use your imagination and your eye!Read More