Dream furniture in the Marais

Resin stools by Wonmin Park

Resin stools by Wonmin Park at the Carpenters workshop gallery

It was pouring rain and I had a hard time finding the door to the Carpenters workshop, a very discreet but grand gallery in the Marais, a block away from BHV super-trendy store. But when I saw the true « jewels » designed by South Korean artist Wonmin Park, the sky became blue ! The poetry and refinement of his resin pieces of furniture is mind blowing and I still dream about them today. I was happily pleased to find other pieces of his at Musée des Arts Décoratifs’s show “Korea Now!”.Read More

These royal pieces can be yours

Lot 28 - Lami Soirée chez le duc d'Orléans

Eugène-Louis Lami, Une soirée chez le duc d’Orléans, 1843

It is always exciting to walk into a pre auction exhibiton and choose (abstractly) the pieces one wants to buy ! This is exactly what I did at Sotheby’s this week, for the royal collection of the Orléans family. The last king of France, Louis Philipe had a short reign (1830-1848) as you can discover in Munro Price’s excellent biography, “The Perilous Crown” (Macmillan), but he loved the arts and collected when in exile in Claremont house, in England. Some of his paintings are coming up for sale on 29 th and 30 th September and the catalog is online.

Read More

“Vie de Château” in Beaujolais


The XVII th century castle was built by Mansart

There is something almost sinful in waking up at Château de la Chaize, watching French gardens designed by Le Nôtre from my window and thinking about our hostess, Caroline von Klitzing, who is working hard in the cellar to conclude the wine making season. And I enjoyed it immensely.

A view from my window

The view from my window over Le Nôtre gardens restored thanks to an old  painting

Read More

“Divine Frago” at Musée du Luxembourg


Jean-Honoré Fragonard: "La résistance inutile".

Jean-Honoré Fragonard: “La résistance inutile”.

The title of this exhibition of  paintings by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, “Fragonard in Love, suitor and libertine”, is very strange… The curator, Guillaume Faroult, takes great care in telling us that « Frago » was married (at 37) and faithful to his lovely painter wife Marie-Anne Gérard all his life, so why call him a libertine? But the scenes of « La Résistance inutile », « La chemise enlevée », « l’Instant désiré » are very exciting and never have I seen creased sheets so well painted…

Le Verrou, came from the Louvre

“Le Verrou”, came from the Louvre

Read More

Revelations, a creative crafts fair

a porcelain ring in which you grow what you like (Esprit Porcelaine in Limoges)

A porcelain ring in which you grow what you like (Esprit Porcelaine in Limoges, 65€)

There are few things more exciting than walking into Grand Palais at ten A.M. and seeing a whole range of 300 maitres d’art. And I was surprised at the number of craftsmen I discovered within two hours. This new art fair « Revelations », started two years ago by Henri Jobbé-Duval, was incredibly successful this year and here are the marvels I found.Read More

Young talents at Publicis

Christophe Ono-di-biot announces the winner with Anne de la Baume, who runs the Fondaiton Bleustein Blanchet and Academician Erik Orsenna, member of the jury

Christophe Ono-di-biot announces the winner of the literary Prize with Anne de la Baume, who runs the Fondation Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet and Erik Orsenna, member of the jury

There are a few magical hidden places in Paris and the terrace on top of the Publicis building, on place de l’Etoile, is one of them. Each year in September, a poetry and a literary prize are given to a young writer by the Fondation pour la Vocation Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet and a relaxed and yet delicious lunch follows on the sunny terrace overlooking Paris and La Défense. This year, Martin Wable, 23, won the poetry prize for “Géopoésie” and Miguel Bonnefoy, 29 for his first novel « Le Voyage d’Octavio » which we had already reviewed here last March.Read More

Anne and Patrick Poirier, the dark visionaries

Anne et Patrick Poirier en vacances cet été, photo Pierre-Antoine Champenois

Anne and Patrick Poirier on holiday this summer, photo Pierre-Antoine Champenois

The first time I was confronted to Anne and Patrick Poirier’s Mediterranean ruins, was at the French consulate in New York in 1978. André Gadaud, the then French Consul General, had commissioned from Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres, a fabulous  porcelain centerpiece  “Ruines d’Egypte”, which represented Greek  columns heightened with gold. I have since seen it again and felt the same emotion at MUCEM, the Marseille museum, which focuses on the Méditerrannée. The new show at Galerie Mitterrand in Paris is called « Mesopotamia » and tracks back to the 1960’s, the couple’s passion for archeology and Greek temples. Fifty years later and just after the destruction of the temple of Palmyre, they appear as dark prophets.

Selinunte, Agosto 1973, photograph enhanced with painting

“Selinunte, Agosto 1973”, photograph enhanced with paint

Read More

François 1er comes to Chantilly


This tapestry after Jules Romain, “La Bataille de Zama”, (detail) 1544, came from Madrid. Its seize and quality are striking.

What better way to celebrate your 21st birthday than to win a battle which will make you famous for the rest of your life ? This is what François 1er, brand new king of France, did on September 13 th and 14 th (his birthday was on the 12th) 1515, in Marignano, near Milan. This is the only date that all French school children remember and we are celebrating this year its  500 th anniversary. Thanks to the Venitians, France was victorious against the Pope and his Swiss army. With 16 000 deaths over a two day battle, François 1er regained the Duchy of Milano and Lombardy.

Olivier de Rohan admires the Portrait of François 1er by CLouet lent by the Louvre

Olivier de Rohan admires the Portrait of “François 1er en tenue d’apparat” by Clouet, 1527, lent by the Louvre

Read More