When I was at the Palace of Versailles in November 2010, there was an exhibition of 22 eye-catching sculptures of Japanese artist Takashi Murakami. I liked the contrast between the old and the new, but I guess not everybody shared my opinion...
The hall of mirrors or Grand Gallery served as passageway and a waiting and meeting place, frequented by courtiers and the visiting public. It was only used for ceremonies on ecceptional occasions, when sovereigns wanted to lend splendour to diplomatic receptions or distractions on the occasion of princely weddings. It was also here that the treaty of Versailles was signed on 28th June 1919 which sealed the end of the First World War.
The construction of the Royal Chapel started in 1689, in 1710 it was finally consecrated. During the 18th century it witnessed many court events, as for instance the wedding of Louis XVI to Marie-Antoinette. This photo shows the chapel from the "tribune royale" where the king and members of the royal family heard the mass.
This week I´m taking you to the Palace of Versailles. As of 1661 Louis XIV (the "Sun King", 1638-1715) transformed and expanded his father´s hunting lodge and over the following decades had it expanded into one of the largest palaces in the world. In 1682 the court and government of France moved to Versailles.
Sunday morning at the Marché de la Bastille, a lot of people running errands, tourists taking photos... and then this young man, lost in thought, unaffected of all the turbulence! I also love his jacket, his scarf and above all his straw hat (a little out of the ordinary for the month of November).
Taking the subway in Paris is rarely boring: There are often musicians or other artistic interludes.Normally nobody takes notice of these artists who try to "earn" money this way as you can see in this photo.
Last november I finally made it to the the concept store Merci on Boulevard Beaumarchais and I loved it. The store stocks furniture, fashion items as well as other pieces for the home, and there´s also a used-book café. All profits from the venture are donated to charities.
Francois Mansart (1598-1666) was a French architect, he introduced classicism into the French Baroque architecture. Since the 1620s he was highly recognized for his style and skills as an architect, but he was viewed as a stubborn and difficult perfectionist, tearing down his structures in order to start building them over again. I discovered this statue on the facade of the Louvre.
The Hôtel Camondo, located near the Parc Monceau in the 8th arrondissement, was built in 1911 for the banker Moise de Camondo (his family owned one of the largest banks in the Ottoman empire, established in France in 1869) to set off his collection of eighteenth-century French furniture and art objects. After the death of his only son Nissim in World War I, the banker decided to bedqueath his property to the Musée des Arts Décoratifs. The Museum at the hôtel Camondo opened in 1836, one year after Moise de Camondo´s death. His daughter, her husband and her children died during World War II in the Nazi camps - the Camondo family died out.
The Igor Stravinsky Fountain next to the Centre Pompidou, ornamented with 16 mechanical sculptures inspired by Igor Stravinsky´s compositions, was inaugurated in June 1983. The scultpures are works by Jean Tinguely and Niki de Saint Phalle. I´m working in a museum where the oeuvre of both artists has already been on display, so this fountain has a special meaning to me.
This bakery with the beautiful portal is located on Boulevard Beaumarchais in the 11th arrondissement and I just love it. But to be honest I love every Parisian bakery. My favourite "viennoiseries" are pain au chocolat and croissant aux amandes. Which one do you prefer?