Wednesday, November 30, 2005
Two days ago I received a very touching e-mail from another Eric who is from Montreal in Québec, Canada and who teaches French at Chrysalis School in Seattle, Washington USA. He wrote "Since I discovered your blog, my pupils and I have a look at your daily picture at the end of each class!". So I thought I would take a photo, just for them! Last evening, I went to rue Washington off the Champs Elysées (8th arrondissement) and took this shot. Just a little something from ParisDailyPhoto to Washington!
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Yesterday (well Monday) I got stuck in a huge - I am talking huge! - traffic jam in the middle of the 8th arrondissement. About 6,000 Restaurant and Café owners from all over France had organised a protest against the VAT rate they have to comply with (Value Added Tax that we have in Europe which varies according to the type of goods that are sold) . They currently are required by the government to collect 19.6% VAT whereas they only want to collect 5.5% to make goods cheaper. To demonstrate, they did not march in the streets as protesters usually do, but used their cars (it's cold in Paris at the moment, so what did you expect?!) and blew their horn.
Monday, November 28, 2005
Many interesting/funny slogans were created by the students during the mini revolution that took place in May 1968. One of them, that everybody still has in mind was "The beach lies under the cobblestones!" And very recently I came across this one painted directly on the sidewalk and widely inspired from the original one: "The cobblestones lie under the concrete!" meaning probably that since the 60's a second layer has been added and that the revolution is going to take even longer!
Sunday, November 27, 2005
Close to my place there is a covered street called Le Passage Jouffroy
(the 19th century version of shopping malls!) where you can find the Musée Grévin (wax museum) and a lot of shops - mostly art oriented. One of them is a stunning gallery of antique walking canes that you should not miss if you come to the neighbourhood. I took a photo of this one with Naopleon on the handle but all of them deserve to be shown.
Saturday, November 26, 2005
Friday, November 25, 2005
If you live in Atlanta, you won’t have to come to Paris next year to visit the Louvre museum – well at least one part of it… As a matter of fact, according to CNN “for the first the first time in the Louvre's 212-year history the museum has agreed to share entire collections with another museum for an extended period.” Aren’t you lucky? But there is one thing you won’t be able to see: the magnificent Louvre Pyramide at night! So here it is…
Thursday, November 24, 2005
For obvious reasons we do not celebrate Thansgiving (le Merci donnant !) in France. And though, due to the quite large number of Americans living in Paris, there is a place in the 4th arrondissement precisely called Thanksgiving that is not only a caterer but also a restaurant (with Cajun specialties). Needless to say that you do not hear too much French speaking in this place! Now, isn't it the perfect time for me to wish a happy Thanksgiving to my American visitors and to thank you all for the nice feedback you give me on Paris Daily Photo.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
We are currently experiencing a public transportation strike in Paris at the moment. Yesterday it was the SNCF (which includes the express train suburban network) and tomorrow it will be the RATP (the Metro and bus network). It's not a big strike but serious enough to scare people... Some of them choose to get up very early and take their car to work whereas others choose to hit the streets. And frankly, in the morning, in a city like Paris, it's not that unpleasant!
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
There are 1 860 mailboxes in Paris and most of them are covered in graffitis (although it is highly prohibited as you can imagine!). Generally these graffitis are pretty ugly but this time this simple smile made me... smile. So I thought I'd share it with you today.
Monday, November 21, 2005
Each year in November Paris hosts one of the largest photographs fair in the world. It is called – quite logically – Paris Photo and is mostly dedicated to modern and contemporary photography. I went to this event yesterday and enjoyed is very, very much. Here I am (thank you Patricia for taking this shot) by a superb photograph by Arno Rafael Minkkinen; the best in the whole exhibit according to me!
Sunday, November 20, 2005
On November 17, when I posted the photo of a Rodin statue, Joe, a reader from New York asked in the comments "I was wondering if you had some information on a statue in Jardin du Luxembourg. It is a statue of a boy holding a mask up in the air...". Well, Joe, I took a photo of this man last July and here it is... In fact this Greek Actor (it's the same of this statue by Charles-Arthur Bourgeois (1838 - 1886)) does not hold a mask but a manuscript for he is rehearsing his role. The mask is on the top of his head.
Saturday, November 19, 2005
OK, OK, it's Beaujolais Nouveau time but I am not a sucker for it; too much marketing and not enough quality! If I am going to drink average wine I much prefer the piquette (sour) taste of the Clos Montmartre which vineyard grows on the hill of... Montmartre. It all started with the Romans then continued with the Gaulois and the French until it became financially more attractive to grow concrete than wine... Fortunately around 1930 several artists (including famous painter Francisque Poulbot) urged the town hall to keep some land for the vineyards. Thanks to them, nowadays you can still find 1 900 Cep de vignes (plants) and the Vendanges (grape harvest) takes place in October.
Friday, November 18, 2005
About 105 years after the first Paris Métro line (still in service and still called Line 1) the network has grown tremendously. According to various sources there are about 300 Métro stops (stations), separated on average by 543 meters (the longest distance between two stations - Bobigny-Pantin-Raymond/Queneau-Bobigny-Pablo Picasso - amounts to 2385 meters!). Due to the huge number of people travelling by metro everyday in Paris (about 1, 4 million) it has become a real underground city with shops, little cafés, vending machines…
Thursday, November 17, 2005
I have been living in Paris for... Well, since I was born, and I never noticed this fabulous sculpture by Auguste Rodin (1840 - 1917). It is called L’âge d’Airain and is located in the center of... Place Rodin, in the 16th arrondissement. It is absolutly stunning. By the way, don't miss the Musee Rodin when you come to Paris...
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Today I greet another guest star on this blog! His name is Jerome, he regularly adds nasty comments on this blog but deep inside he is a good person! Otherwise do you really think he could have taken such a magnificent picture? From what he told me he took it recently early in the morning from his apartment located on the 6th floor. The two domes that you can see on the horizon line belong to the Sacre Coeur basilic.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
In the 3rd arrondissement there is a famous high profile technical school called Le Conservatoire des Arts et Métiers. For the 200 year anniversary of the school - in 1994 -François Schuiten (a Belgian comics illustrator) redesigned the Métro station that takes you there (which, quite logically, is also called Arts et Métiers) and turned it into a giant submarine with massive use of copper. The result is fantastic and it is definitely worth the visit.
Monday, November 14, 2005
After about 2 weeks of riots in Paris and in the Provinces the situation is now clearly improving: "only" 200 cars have burnt last night. You can definitely come and visit us again!
Sunday, November 13, 2005
Do you belong to an association? If you are French it is very likely you do. According to l'Insee (Institut national de la statistique), 45% of the French belong to one. There are about 1 million associations in France (more in this study) dealing with culture, sports, charity, leisure, business... You will find a good example in this photo that has been taken by my friend Jean-Christophe near La Madeleine (a famous church). At this address (28 rue Tronchet) you find the headquarters of the National Association for workers in the Ministries, Parliament and Senate as well as a Veterans Tennis association. I am not sure all this translates very well, but don't worry, even in French it sounds weird!
Saturday, November 12, 2005
I had dinner at a friend's place yesterday evening. He lives on the 6th floor in a typical 18th arrondissement Parisian building with wooden floors. Here is what you see when you finally get to the top!
Friday, November 11, 2005
Today is a holiday in France. We celebrate the end of World War I which ended precisely November 11, 1918 at eleven o'clock. This truce (armistice) was signed by Marechal Foch in a train carriage specially fitted for this occasion (this same carriage was also used in 1940 by Hitler to sign the rendition of France). This statue of Marechal Ferdinand Foch is at the Place du Trocadero and it faces the Eiffel tower; I took it yesterday morning when the sun was just rising.
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Yesterday was a big radio day for me! I was first interviewed by the BBC world service (go to the lower part of the page, in the middle, click on "Audio" until the 39th minute if you want to listen directly to the interview). They were interested in the role that French blogs played in the recent riots. Later at night I spoke to Loïc Le Meur on Europe2, a music station that also runs a daily show about blogs at 9 pm. Therefore, I thought that the best photo of the day could only be La Maison de la Radio - which is the building where the French public radio is located (in the 16th arrondissement).
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
So... Despite the situtation in Paris - and France in general - is improving a little, I think it is time to think of something more cheerful... Hence Christmas! The lights and displays are already in place in most of the shops and I chose to show you the ones of Galeries lafayette. Very cute! The kids just love them.
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Do you remember this post? Well providing what is happening in France now (and by the way don't go thinking that half of the country is on fire, only some spots!) we do need to remember the value of the Republic. I thought it was a good idea to show it again...
Monday, November 07, 2005
Created in 1868 the Théâtre des Folies Bergère (located in the 9th arrondissement) is one of the most famous theater in the world. Mistinguett, Josephine Baker, Maurice Chevalier, Yvonne Printemps, Jeanne Auber... and more recently, even California dream men (!!) staged in this theater. I thought this would cheer us up after all what's happening in Paris at the moment.
Sunday, November 06, 2005
You have probably heard about the riots north of Paris (and other French cities). Last night, nearly 1,300 cars were set on fire, and for the fist time, violence reached the center of Paris (in the 17th and 3rd arrondissements). I don't care about whose responsibility it is (we probably all share it), but I feel so sorry for the innocent people who have been caught up in these acts of violence…losing their cars, their shops and sometimes their life (one man was beaten to death and a handicapped woman burned when she couldn’t get out of a burning bus). I do not know when and how this is going to end, but I hope it is soon.
Put this photo on a card, mug, t-shirt, bag and more here!
Saturday, November 05, 2005
Today I offer you a jump in the past and more precisely in the middle ages! At that time Paris had about 200 000 inhabitants and was the largest city of Europe (together with Naples); as you may know, the city was mostly built on an island (l'île de la cité) on the river Seine. You could also find inhabitants on the left bank (where the Romans used to live when they occupied the country) and on the right bank where the port was located. During the 13th century a university was built on the left bank and that is where students used to go to learn Latin; since then it is known as the "Latin Quarter". By the way, this photo is actually a mock up that I shot in the Carnavalet Museum
Friday, November 04, 2005
According to the Yellow Pages (well Les Pages Jaunes!) there are about 627 florists in Paris but some are really different (do you remember this shot?). I pass this one every day on the way back from work, it is called Shivani (after the name of Goddess Parvati who married Shiva), it is located 99 bd Haussmann (8th arrondissement) and it's really beautiful.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Although we are experiencing an incredibly warm weather at the moment in Paris, fall has begun and the tree leaves have started to change colours. There are 478 000 trees in Paris (including the 300 000 in the two woods around Paris: Boulogne and Vincennes) for a yearly budget of... 8 million euros! Yes, people, we do love our trees!
Isn't that a good occasion to listen to one of the most famous French songs: The autumn leaves (Les feuilles mortes)? Here is a version by Juliette Greco and one by Yves Montand that I found on the Web .
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Even if you are not French I am sure you read (or saw) the story of The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870), one of our most famous writers. In this story - which takes place in 1625 - a character called d'Artagnan arrives in Paris at the age of 18 and quickly makes friends with three musketeers : Porthos, Aramis, and Athos. Well, if you wander around at the crossing of Avenue de Villiers and Boulevard Malesherbes in the 17th arrondissement you get to see a magnificent monument by Gustave Doré, dedicated to Alexandre Dumas. On one of its sides you can see d'Artagnan almost in the flesh! Very impressive.
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
We do not have Halloween as such in France but on November 1st we celebrate a Catholic feast called All Saint's day. This feast is a holiday and traditionally people take advantage of it to visit a relative or a parent in the cemetery where they are buried. I thought it was a good occasion to show you more of the Pere Lachaise Cemetery, a huge cemetery inside Paris where anonymous and famous people rest in peace. I already showed Oscar Wilde tomb here but today I invite you to discover a lot of other masterpieces.