What an eye-opener for me to return to Musée d’Orsay after visiting Van Gogh’s last place of work. The paintings seem so vibrant now and the scenes had become familiar. Because he had committed suicide, the catholic church refused that he be buried in their cemetery. His cheerful painting of the church building is an ironic contrast to the strict, sombre institution that it was at the time.
Edgar Degas (1834 – 1917) was a master of composition. His ballerinas seem so natural in their stances, as if captured in a moment of total unawareness. The whole scene is in harmony, perfectly balanced, each directional line there for a reason and yet there is no sense of an orchestrated ‘pose’.
FIAC (International Contemporary Art Fair) is in Paris from 21-25 October 2015. Not a big fan of queues, I decided to visit the Petit Palais instead of the Grand Palais, the latter being one of the main attractions of this fair.
Small palace is a total misnomer, it is elegant, spacious and airy, deplete of vulgar extravagance.The ceilings are exquisite. The artworks range from renaissance up to 20th century.
In all the museums I went to there were school groups visiting, varying from pre-schoolers to young adults. The museums I remember from childhood, had dinosaur skeletons, dead butterflies and ox-wagons. Would I have listened so attentively to seemingly endless discussions about these amazing works, I wonder?
The sculpture of Adam and Eve, holding their murdered son Abel left me speechless, I still have no words to describe how it moved me.
The ‘art’ on the sidewalk in front of the Petit Palais also left me without words for a quite different reason. A wall of concrete bricks had been built and pushed over by an artist, the debris left by this exercise is his contribution to FIAC, maybe this is misspelled too 🙂
Pont Alexandre III must be the prettiest bridge in Paris. Adorned with exuberant Art Nouveau decorations of lamps, cherubs, nymphs and winged horses at either end. It was built between 1896 and 1900, named after Tsar Alexander III. His son Nicholas II laid the foundation stone in October 1896. The construction of the bridge is a marvel of 19th century engineering. It consists of a 6m high single-span steel arch across the Seine. The bridges 4 columns help to anchor the piers to absorb the immense forces generated by such a large single span-structure. The design was subject to strict controls, preventing the bridge from obscuring the view of the Champs-Élysées or the Invalides. The view from there is magnificent.
All these beautiful bridges in Paris, would you have chosen this one for your wedding photos?