Monday, April 30, 2007

Jean-Paul Gaultier

During my visit to the Musée des Arts de la Mode (fashion art) located in the musée des Arts Décoratifs , I took advantage of having a drawing made of me by none other than fashion designer Jean-Paul Gaultier. You see my name? That proves it doesn’t it? Ok, well you’ll have to see for yourself, but hurry, this special exhibit celebrating the collaboration between this famous couturier and renowned choreographer Régine Chopinot is only running until 23 September 2007. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!
PS: I am currently on vacation so I cannot reply to your comments. I'll read them when I return, on May 7.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Brooching the subject…

As promised here, this is something a bit more serious from the Musée des Arts de la Mode (fashion art) located in the musée des Arts Décoratifs. As part of the jewelery exhibit, this brooch is just one amongst hundreds of other fantastic pieces on display. In total, the museum’s collection contains some 16,000 costumes, 35,000 fashion accessories, and 30,000 pieces of textile, tracing the history of costume from the Regency period to the present-day and innovations in textiles since the 7th century. I almost didn’t go into this part of the museum as I usually find jewelery exhibits boring, but I have to tell you that this is something not to miss.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

A bull in a (china) shop

I spent a very very nice evening on the Seine tonight with a few PDP fans who happen to be - or visit - Paris. Someone was kind enough to take a photo but due to a lack of light it's pretty bad so I did not post it here. Instead here is a photo I took not far from where we were, in the Carrousel du Louvre (shopping mall). Not to be confused with this carrousel, it is located just adjacent to the Musée du Louvre, in the basement. There are many shops, some of which are chain stores, and even a food court (the first I’ve ever seen in France!). It is also one of the few places permitted to stay open on Sunday. I wouldn’t recommend you make a special trip there, but if you happen to be visiting the Louvre or the nearby Musée des Arts Décoratifs , it is probably worth a peek.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Public Toilet

No, it's not a French public toilet - ours are much more sophisticated! - it's just a "private model" that I found right in the middle of the 15th arrondissement (rue Falguière). I thought I should have posted it after my April 24 post! BTW, if you're interested here are the photos I took at Chenonceau yesterday.
PS : those of you who want join me tonight for the mini PDP meeting should click here for the instructions.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Free me!

As you can tell, I took this photo in the Metro and, no, the hand you see through the window does not belong to a guy who is stuck on the railway(!) but to an ad for Johnny Walker, a whiskey brand. Not as beautiful as the Madeleine Church of yesterday but much less classical. Today (Thursday) I'm off to Chenonceau by the Loire Valley for the day (work again, it really sucks...); if you're good, I'll bring back photos ;) - Update, here are the photos I took at Chenonceau.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

La Madeleine Church

I doubt this photo gets as many comments as yesterday's one(!) and though it also shows something you won't see anywhere else than in Paris: the Eglise de la Madeleine. What makes it different is that it was originally conceived by Napoleon to celebrate the victories of his Grande Armée, then it was almost turned into... a train station and finally ended up as a church! All this over 85 years... More here, on Wikipedia.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Life in the Pink

Yes, this is a graffiti of... toilet paper! When I saw it (by the Centre Culturel Suisse, off rue des Francs Bourgeois), I could not help taking a photo thinking of how many times foreign visitors mentioned to me that they were surprised to see pink toilet paper... For yes, ladies and gentleman, in France pink toilet paper is the norm (well, almost). Also, for those of you who are currently learning French, the "PQ" is not the artist's signature (at least I don't think so!), but stands for Papier Q (Q sounding like Cul in French, which means "butt"), pronounced "Pay-Kew".

Monday, April 23, 2007

South Jefferson High School in Paris

You've all seen the results I suppose, let's take a break from the elections for a while, I'll come back to them when the second round is in sight... Right now, I would like to wish a happy return home to the students of South Jefferson Central School (and to their teacher Françoise) who are regular visitors to PDP and who I finally had the pleasure to meet last week.
Talking about meetings, let me remind you that all those who happen to be in Paris this Friday (April 27) are kindly invited to a little PDP gathering. I will let you know - Thursday at the latest - where it'll take place (depending on the weather).

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Who should lead France?

I'm surprised to see how much the foreign media has been dealing with the French elections this year (hence this poster of The Economist); usually, they are not that interested. Maybe because Chirac became famous after the Iraqi crisis? Or is it because nobody knows what the outcome of the elections will be? Or is it because the French said "no" to the European constitution referendum? Anyway, until you can see for yourself on France24 (around 6 pm GMT on Sunday), here are some useful links (in French) : a funny mix of all the candidates and even more fascinating, a sneak preview of who the winner might be... You might also want to "vote" for fun (see the poll on the left).

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Pont neuf at dawn

A little "postcard" photo to start the weekend. Another shot of one of the most beautiful bridges in Paris : le Pont neuf. I showed it here and here already - all with different light - but I am sure you will like this 3rd view, taken in the morning from the lower right banks. Have a great weekend and meet you here Sunday for the Primary election day. (PS: Blogger seems to be very very slow at the moment, my apology - even if I'm not responsible!)

Friday, April 20, 2007

French elections in 3 days...

The French Primary will take place on Sunday and according to the polls, 40% of the voters still don't know who they are going to vote for. That is why each camp still tries to influence people with last minute actions. Hence, this anti Sarkozy demonstration that I photographed at the Place de la Bastille. They make fun of him by calling him Karcher Man, because he once said "I'm going to clean up the suburbs with a Kärcher (a high-pressure cleaning system)".

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Bird spotters

The nice weather attracts new kinds of bird watchers. This one is the urban kind and he goes out mainly at daylight on sunny afternoons... Sorry, no cultural momentum, no architecture masterpieces and no useful tip today, just a funny pic!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Arch of Triumph Staircase

Several of you asked yesterday if you had to walk up the stairs to reach the top of the Arch of Triumph and Pont Girl mentioned a spiral staircase... Well, here it is. There is an elevator though, but it's normally reserved to disabled people - which is pretty stupid because it does not go all the way to the top - there is still the equivalent of one story to reach the top. Anyway, I asked to use the elevator because of my bad knees and it worked ;)

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

From the top of the Arch of Triumph

And now... the real one! I took this photo from the top of the Arch of Triumph (Arc de Triomphe) up top the Champs Elysées avenue. It was the first time I went to the top since my parents took me when I was 5 or 6 years old! Pretty impressive I must say. I will show you more photos in future posts. PS: in reference to Richard's comment on yesterday's photo, photographing the Eiffel Tower is not "forbidden" by daylight. At night, the lighting is copyrighted, that is why for commercial use - and only for commercial use - it is not permitted to publish a photo of the Tower at night.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Paris Marathon 2007

Four years ago, I wrote a story for a French magazine about "Managers who run the Marathon" and I've always remembered the interviews I carried out at that time, for some of them were very moving. This morning, I felt the same emotion while I attended - and only attended! - the 2007 Paris Marathon. Also, I remember people telling me how beautiful it is to run in the heart of Paris and, well, I do believe them! I took 1 gigabytes of photos this morning but I selected 40 for you. Here they are...

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sun bathing

If you come to Paris and are looking for a nice - and quite original - walk, I suggest you go up the "Coulée verte" along the Avenue Daumesnil (12th arrondissement), a former train track that they turned into a green lane. Very clever. At the end of this walk today, I found gardens in which a lot of people were laying in the sun. I took this photo from a suspension bridge that goes over these gardens. Really cool place.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Yes, it's a classic!

OK, yes, I know, it's Le Sacré Coeur, it's a classic that you can find on any postcard and I showed it several times (here, here, here and here...) Stop complaining, I never showed it from that close, and never on such a clear day! So here it is, the Sacred Heart basilica, located on the top of the butte Montmartre, the second highest point in Paris. It was decided to build it around 1870 and the first stones were laid in 1875. It's a must see when you visit Paris, not only because it's very very impressive, but also because the surroundings are worth a visit. Of course at this time of the year (Easter break) the place is pretty crowded but it's still better (less worse) that in summer! Have a great week end everyone.

Friday, April 13, 2007

April in Paris...

I really wish you were ALL here! The weather is so nice in Paris at the moment that you feel like stopping at a café terrace every hour and just enjoy life! That is what I did at lunch time today, and believe me, it was worth it! I know that some of my regular visitors will arrive today (like Françoise and her French class from South Jefferson Central School, NY), let me tell you that you are going to have a fantastic weather... As for the other visitors (Jeff, Philly...) who will arrive at the end of the month, well it's a little too soon to tell. One thing is sure; the yearly PDP meeting will take place on April 27 in the evening. Save the date!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

France strikes no more

Let me take a guess. When you think of a country constantly on strike do you happen to think of France? I bet you do... And though, apparently(*), despite a common belief the French "strike rate" is - and has long time been - pretty "normal". I came across a very interesting study (in French) which shows that, over the last century, we have always been "behind" Italy, Spain, Greece, Canada... More surprisingly, the latest figures (1998 - 2004) show that countries we look up to (socially wise) like Denmark, Norway or Finland happen to go more often on strike than France!

(*) I said "apparently" because other studies show different results.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Election times

The election campaign has officially started... It means that each of the 12 candidates has the right to be exposed on public billboards (like this one) and to appear on public television and radio (for the exact same amount of time, needless to say...) They are not allowed to spend more that 15,4 million euros for the primaries and 20,6 million € for the actual elections and all their expenses will be refunded by the government provided they get a minimum of 5% of the votes. As you see, even at election times we stick to the "Egalité" principle as much as we can...

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Eiffel Tower (again!)

If you can't take the big iron lady with you, why not its miniature replica?! You'll have no trouble finding one in the streets of Paris... Most of them are sold illegally by hawkers in touristy places such as Le Trocadéro, where I took this photo. Have a good week everybody, mine starts again tomorrow, it's been a pleasure having a 3 day break I must say.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Centaurus by César

Everyone has heard of Rodin and his fabulous sculptures, but we have many more famous sculptors here in France! Hence, César (full name: César Baldaccini) who is famous for his car "compressions" (big modern sculptures made of compressed cars) and for his César du cinéma, the equivalent to the Oscars in the US. Here is one of his works of art that I photographed at the Place Michel Debré (6th arrondissement) in the Saint-Germain area. PS: Very quiet weekend here in Paris, the weather is fantastic but I have to work...

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Unusual Easter scene...

I took this photo last week, but I saved it for today, the day Christians celebrate Easter. I already mentioned here that I live by Drouot, a big auction house where they sell art and antiques. Quite logically, around this auction house there are a lot of dealers and Commissaires priseurs (auctioneers?) where people bring their art objects to be estimated. There is so much art everywhere that sometimes they don't really know what to do with it! That is how, the other day, on my way to work, I came across this scene... (Special thanks to Drouot Estimations who kindly let me take this photo).

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Freakin' computer!

Don't you wish you could do this to your computer sometimes?! I do... But this is not mine... I found it on the sidewalk close to my place and I could not help but take a photo or even imagine how it ended up there... Maybe an angry wife or husband who through her spouse's machine out of the window because they spent too much time on Paris Daily Photo!! Of course, like I mentioned last November, it is highly prohibited to leave any garbage - especially electronic parts - in the street.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Musée des Arts décoratifs

If there is ONE museum to visit while you're in Paris it's the brand new (well "brand renewed") musée des Arts décoratifs (or Art Deco). It's an extremely diverse museum where you can see everything from fine French china to furniture, fashion and even toys. Precisely today, since it's Friday (and the eve of a long week end in France) I chose to show you a "funny" scene made of toys. But I'll show you more "serious" art deco some day.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

A la Doisneau

Wherever you're from there are good chances that you already heard of Robert Doisneau, one of the most famous French photographers in the world. His most famous photos (including the unforgettable Baiser de l'hôtel de ville) were taken after the war, in the 50's. Until recently there was an exhibition about him at the Paris town hall and now that it's closed this exhibition has moved to the web. Here is the link. Enjoy! As a tribute I took this photo of La Cour des petites écuries from the rue du Faubourg Saint Denis and it probably did not change much since the 50's.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

A parisian loft

Call me lucky if you want but this is where I spent some time this morning - and yes it was work! This swimming pool belongs to an amazing loft, located in the Bastille area (rue de la Roquette) that companies can rent on a day to day basis (this morning it was Samsung who used it to present its latest camera models). There are not many lofts in Paris but they are very much in demand and therefore very expensive. If you want to have a look at some of them do visit this great site.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

French bullet train to break a new record

I will express a bit of a national pride today... The French bullet train, also known as TGV (for Train à Grande Vitesse) will try to break a new world record today (Tuesday). Officially Alstom - the company that makes it - announced that they will try to reach 540 Km/h (336 mph) but in everybody's mind the real goal is to reach 600 Km/h (373 mph) which is faster than many small planes. Of course this does not mean the train will run at this speed eventually (it would be far too expensive) but that it is the fastest in the world. It's important of the image of the company especially if they want to sell it abroad.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Rainbow Pole

In Paris you can find many poles along the streets to prevent cars from parking on the sidewalks. Some of them are used by artists, people who want to advertise, or others who just want to have a little fun. I already showed one example here, so I thought I'd show you this one as well. Happy week everyone.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

April Fools' day

Hey there! Today is a theme day (a mailbox in your city),but it's also April fools' day so I thought of republishing (very exceptionally!) a photo that I took in November 2005. As for me I'm away for the day (Normandy again) and I wish you an excellent Sunday.

65 Daily Photo sites are participating in the 1st April theme, "A Public Mail Box", please use the links to below to visit them. Due to time zone differences and other factors, the theme photo may not be displayed until later if you are viewing early in the day.

1 (London (UK) ) -2 (Grenoble (France) ) -3 (Rotterdam (Netherlands) ) -4 (Greenville SC (USA) ) -5 (Hyde (UK) ) -6 (Villigen (Switzerland) ) -7 (Albuquerque NM (USA) ) -8 (Mazatlan (Mexico) ) -9 (Montréal (Canada) ) -10 (Stayton OR (USA) ) -11 (Shanghai (China) -Jing ) -12 (Arradon (France) ) -13 (Sequim WA (USA) ) -14 (Newcastle upon Tyne (England) ) -15 (Seattle WA (USA) -Kim ) -16 (Bastia (Corse) ) -17 (Minneapolis MN (USA) ) -18 (Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) ) -19 (Joplin MO (USA) ) -20 (Sharon, CT (USA) ) -21 (Cottage Grove MN [USA] ) -22 (Houston, TX (USA) -Candice & Megan ) -23 (Singapore - by Keropokman. ) -24 (Guelph, ON (Canada) ) -25 (Menton (France) ) -26 (Monte Carlo, Monaco ) -27 (Naples, FL (USA) ) -28 (Kyoto (Japan) ) -29 (Tokyo (Japan) ) -30 (Aliso Viejo, CA (USA) ) -31 (Cape Town (South Africa) ) -32 (Jakarta (Indonesia) ) -33 (Kitakami (Japan) ) -34 (Tel Aviv (Israel) ) -35 (Vantaa(Finland)) -36 (Guadalajara (Mexico) ) -37 (Auckland (New Zealand) ) -38 (Nelson (New Zealand) ) -39 (Tuzla (B&H) ) -40 (Brussels (Belgium) ) -41 (Anderson, SC (USA) ) -42 (Lubbock, TX (USA) ) -43 (John, Melbourne, (Australia) ) -44 (Stavanger (Norway)) -45 (Tenerife (Spain) ) -46 (Stockholm (Sweden) ) -47 (Boston, MA (USA) ) -48 (Not Strictly Seattle, Susan ) -49 (New York City, (USA), Ming the Merciless ) -50 (Paris [Eric], (France) ) 51 (Ampang (Selangor) ) -52 (Sydney (Nathalie) Australia ) -53 (Ailea , HI (USA) ) -54 (Manila (Philippines) ) -55 (Sydney (Sally) Australia ) -56 (Cork (Ireland)) -57 (Saarbrücken (Germany) ) -58 (Saint Paul MN (USA) by Carol ) -59 (San Diego, CA (USA) ) -60 (Mexico [POLY], (Mexico) ) -61 (Budapest (Hungary) ) -62 (Singapore (Singapore by Zannnie) ) -63 (Madrid [Dsole] (Spain) ) -64 (Nottingham (England) ) -65 (Bandung (Indonesia))