Monday, 21 April 2014

Magical Monday - Changing Scenes

L'Acteur Grec, the Greek Actor, in the Jardin du Luxembourg has gone to great lengths to change the stage set of his play. Pantheon? What Pantheon?

L'Acteur Grec was sculpted by artist Charles-Arthur Bourgeois in 1868 for the Universal Exhibition.

Every Monday, Magical Monday, I post a photo that is hopefully puzzling, fantastical, unexpected or just plain daft. Unless otherwise mentioned, no Photoshop involved.

More photos from the Magical Mondays series can be found here.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Parc Floral - Tremendous Tulips

It's the school holidays and we're here in Paris having a 'stay-cation'. Spoilt with day after day of cloudless skies, we chose the right school break to stay at home in Paris. Yesterday afternoon after going to the local park to play basket ball in the morning, we decided to go to Le Parc Floral, over by the Bois de Vincennes to the east of Paris. The park was looking intensely green with all the leaves on the trees freshly unfurled. The daffodils were over, but the tulips were not!

Even the shadows looked wonderful.

You can see more tulip photos on BBONTHEBRINK's Flickr account here.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Face Lifted Folies

Back in February when it was still raining a lot we had a day when the skies were clear, and there was a low-in-the-sky wintery sun. It was time to go out, have a walk and soak up some vitamin D as best we could. We had no particular plan, but ended up a little off our usual beaten track in the 9th arrondissement of Paris. We turned left down a typical but unremarkable Parisian side road and suddenly came upon this magnificent sight.

The Folies Bergère is one of the most prestigious music halls in the world. It first opened in 1869 as an opera house but was initially called Les Folies Trévise. During the Franco-Prussian war (1870-71), the theatre was temporarily closed and used for political meetings instead. On reopening the theatre was renamed Les Folies Bergère. The Duc de Trévise was worried that he might be associated with the dance hall and formally requested that the name be changed. It returned to theatrical glory after the war and between 1890 and the 1920s it thrived. In 1928 the original glazed facade of the theatre was replaced with Art Déco gilded frescos, by the sculptor Maurice Picaud.

By the beginning of the 21st century Les Folies Bergère was falling into a state of disrepair. The Zinc roof needed replacing, there was leaks and resulting damage inside the building. At the end of 2011 Jean-Marc Dumontet, a business man and theatre producer, bought the lease to the theatre and instigated a huge renovation programme at a cost of about 5 million euros. The renovations included re-gilding the beautiful art Art Déco frescoes. They are stunning!

I love all the Art Déco details.

Not to mention the Art Déco font.

Inside is very elaborate. Here is the entrance.

We didn't go right into the theatre but did manage to take a peek at the secondary entrance hall. To say it is over the top is an understatement.

Here is the café across the road. I love what they do with the chairs during the winter months. 

It is the gilded frescos that I like the best. Utterly gorgeous. They even inspired me to have a play with some pattern design. What do you think?

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Champs-Élysées in Ink

Just stumbled upon this map of the Champs-Élysées that I drew many moons ago.

Monday, 7 April 2014

Magical Monday - A Beautiful Bouquiniste

Every Monday, Magical Monday, I post a photo that is hopefully puzzling, fantastical, unexpected or just plain daft. In this Magical Monday, exceptionally, I used Photoshop. The lips come from a pair of lips I saw painted on a pavement near where I live.

More photos from the Magical Mondays series can be found here.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Filigree Folly

I wrote a post the other day about the Parc de Bagatelle. It revolved mainly around daffodils and peacocks, with a brief history of the park thrown in for good measure. What I didn't elaborate on were the follies dotted throughout the park. In keeping with the frivolous way in which the park came about in the first place the follies are light, playful and fanciful. There was one that particularly caught my eye. 

You approach it via some very delicate stairs. Although they're not very high, they are very transparent!

Cross a bridge.

Could we have more lacy twirled details please?

And a framed view?

Some intricate shadows?

And back down again. Not for the vertiginous!

More information about the park and how to get there can be found here in English and French.