Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Playing with color and black and white

Here is another one of our famous street artists. His name is Miguel Donvez, aka "Mimi the clown" and you can see several of his stencils in the streets of Paris (I think I took this photo in the 6th arrondissement). Anyway, have a look at his website if you want to know more about him (it's also in English). This stencil made me think of a little animation film made by a group of students from the Paris VIII university where color and black and white, play a large role. Have a look...


  1. I have always found street art fascinating. Thanks for the link.

  2. "Mimi the clown" I like the touch of red...

  3. Mimi looks like she might dabble in other arts as well.

  4. Coooooool! I've see a bit of Mimi the Clown stencil graffiti around Paris, but nothing quite this cool. Can't wait for PDX to see this; she'll love it.

  5. Very clever artwork but I don't like cats so this is scary for me :( I'm out of here. lol.

  6. Ooooooooooooooooooo! Gotta loooove these tomato red shoes! ;)

  7. Thanks for the link to this video. I love it ... it makes me smile! I'm sending it to all my friends!

  8. I agree with A. and Tomate that those tomato red shoes just pop out of this photo! I like the look of B&W with the few flashes of red in the graffiti and on the signs. What's the best translation for the verb presider on the cat? (I think I can figure out juger and inspirer.)

  9. Love that cat! The big eyes sort of remind me of the Keane paintings of the 60s. (well, yes, I am certainly showing my age.) The Keane paintings consisted of mostly children with huge eyes and some cats. Haven't seen any for years.

  10. i'm not a fan of clowns, but i love the red stilettos.

  11. I checked out the Mimi the Clown website. I looked at everything, and man, he is one ugly woman! Plus in real life he is really skinny. I do not know whose body he has painted in this stencil.

    I loved the Reulf video. It reminded me of when I was an art student in NYC in the 70's. We use to do a lot of B&W with limited colour here and there to add emphasis, or design, or just purely for the sake of the particular colour, and how beautiful it is. My favorites are turquoise, gold, hot pink, and of course red. I think I am going to watch that video again.

    Merci for sharing. So, Eric, did you photoshop the background buildings so that they would tie into the Mimi the Clown stencil?

  12. Katie: Do judges sometimes preside (as in “chair”)?

    Good to point that out, Lois. And good photo-shopping, Eric.

  13. Hey, Eiffel Tour Suzie, Isn't the little pink guy in the video cute on the Eiffel Tour saying, "for you" "for you" ?

  14. Yikes. This is not Steinlen's Chat Noir and we're not in Kansas anymore.

  15. By the way, LA people, Magritte's "Treachery of Images" (a.k.a. This Is Not a Pipe) is in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

  16. Jeff, I love Magritte. I'm not in LA but maybe the show will come to San Francisco. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Merci!

  17. It's funny how these urban arts always seems to fit in and give something to the city instead of being a nuisance.
    I love the "splashes" of red, and it's so great that you let us peek around the corner, Eric. I want to walk down that street....

  18. Verrrrrrrry interesting!! That's some Kitty, and everyone wants red shoes. Don't they??

    Looks like a scene out of "Paris je t'aime"..

  19. Thanks a million Eric, again.
    Yesterday was a rainy and pretty boring day. And on top of that I was tired! This morning, had a look to my first daily dose of PDP and found your lovely surprises ; they are going to brighten up my day.
    The link to Reulf's vid is awesome!! Those students are so clever, creative and funny minded, nowadays. Very, very cool. Love it. The photos of Paris are fab.
    Paris, je t'aime, oh yes ... I do ...
    Mimi the clown is worth to know too. Even if I find his art too "black" maybe... I mean in a figurative sense.
    I'd love to be able to share like many of you here on PDP or like all great things that I can see on the Internet!!!!!.... But I'm only a follower who is thankful A LOT to hear from some AWESOME people. See you later ; have to go to work now (not so fun)!

  20. Today rain woke me up.
    I dragged myself out of bed lazily.
    It is 9 am and so dark everywhere, it is raining hard outside.
    I am sipping white coffee and eating croissant with peach filling. I am dreaming about Paris.
    Everything is wet outside. I feel like I am still sleeping.
    I like London in the rain.
    Hey! Have a nice day :-)

  21. I read somewhere that there is an auction sales of Graf'art at the end of this week in Paris. Some of the artists will probably not be present personnally, as they are "outlaws"...

    Hey, Lynn, nice profile photo! Sunny summer's here?

  22. Thanks for great links Eric, the video has some lovely little touches and I love Mimi the Clown's artwork and wicked sense of humour.

    PS Lynn, sorry missed your comment yesterday, the hot chocolate comes in a china teapot which you hold up until it comes out of the spout in an arc and you try to catch it in your mouth. Of course if you miss, it makes a bit of a mess. I seem to remember one of your previous Lynnpics showing the results of this.

    Personally, I prefer to drink it out of the nice cups and saucers provided.

  23. Drummond, in some parts of France, we use the same way of drinking. However, it's not chocolate from a teapot, but wine from a gourd!... And it's also quite a mess if you miss it ;-))

  24. Thanks Thib. I couldn't remember what that wine vessel was called, hence the rather long explanation of the process.
    The gourd sounds like fun, as long as not used for good wine - wouldn't want to spill any!

  25. he he yes the pic with choc all round my mouth! I'm quite fond of that one LOL it's residing on FB now.

    Hot chocolate in an arch which you catch in your mouth? Hope it's not too hot! I remember doing something similar with a cocktail on a sailing ship in the Caribbean. That was messy too... ! Did I care? Nope. I had other bikinis packed... ;) ah those were the days.

    Thanks Thib! I like to change the old profile here and there, as you know. I get a bit bored with myself lol. Yes it's been VERY sunny here in Blighty.

  26. The gourd sounds like fun!! Does it? Oh my, how you go... LOL
    For sure, that's a definition!

  27. Jeff, LOL!

    Lynn's scared of cats, but 'Sexy Mimi' does nothing to change my fear of clowns!

    Bettina, I'll come for a walk around the corner with you. :)

  28. mm...Anonyme, having carried out a discreet little web search, I think I may need warmer clothes!

    I didn't realise until now that there is a parallel 'gourd/gourde' universe out there, about which I was completely ignorant (gourde?)

    You wouldn't believe the things you can do with a gourd(e)! There is even a band called the Gourds.

    Thib, Anonyme, thanks for my brief journey into Gourdland.

    PS Lynn (again) Did you, by any chance, ever appear in a Martini advertisement?

  29. Lynn, correction, 'Cinzano' advertisement. Oops!

  30. LOOOOOL Drummond. I knew you could get it right!
    Your wife would have loved that one, don't you think so??? LOL
    Well, I bet she is so delighted with your strong sense of humour that she would keep you anyway!!! ;)
    All the best in Gourland :)

  31. LOL, Drummond! Love your voyage en Gourdland ;-)
    A Band called the Gourds? What do they play?

  32. Martini ad? No not me. OH! Cinzano? Oh well....er no. lol. Why? ;)

  33. Thib, I believe they are a country music band from Texas in the Good Old USA.
    Mr. Coltrane might know more.

  34. Ha! You mean the splashed liquid all over me! (er..) I see. Yes, that was me getting my head down (er..). ;)

  35. Lynn, let's forget about the Cinzano advertisements. It's quite obvious that you were never in them.

  36. I don't get Mimi the clown as much at the other street artists, but I do enjoy learning about all of it.

    Wish I could be there for the auction. I actually bought a MIss Tic seriograph the other day.

    Tomorrow, London.Thursday, NYC. Friday, WORK.

  37. I was I was! Here I am.... ;)
    Cinzano Ad

    Oh ok then, sounds a bit like me anyway... :( lol

  38. Nice bit of color to enhance the overall effect of the b&w. The cat looks like she might belong to Cruella de Ville.

  39. PHX - tomorrow WORK,Thursday -WORK

    Lynn, Nice try, but I really don't think anyone is convinced.
    Anyway, about these Hot Chocolate (good name for a band) characters. I'm getting some vibes...are you game if I start off?

    PS- A refusal will not offend!

  40. Lois: to clarify, that Magritte painting lives at LACMA, it's not a special exhibit. LACMA really impressed me. I enjoyed it much more than I expected I would, though not as much as the PDPLA dinner!

    I don't know if everyone wants red shoes, Tomate, but the angels want to wear mine!

  41. Hope you are not too tired because of work Eric.
    Summer holidays are approaching. I'd love to have two months of vacation like kids have!

    Take care.
    Please :)

  42. Oh yes go on Drummond! Sorry got held up so didn't get over before now. Yes of course I'm game - for that. lol.

  43. He slowly tilted the ornate African gourd above her head and, as she lay on the deck, she could see the dark brown liquid emanating from its spout form a perfect arc against the clear blue sky. Her lips parted, and she felt the warm, rich chocolate caress the back of her throat.

    "Mmm...that's nice," she gurgled, realising immediately that to talk was a mistake. She should have kept her mouth open by keeping her mouth shut.

    "If I'd wanted a face pack. I'd have have gone to the ******* beauty salon!" she yelled, as she reached for a tissue to wipe away the hot chocolate which by now , still liquid in the hot sun, formed rivulets which ran down between her tanned breasts.

    He smiled, "Hey, why don't I help you with that?" We can lick it off together babe."

    "In your nighty-night dirty dreams buster. Don't forget you're just the hired hand around here!"

    "Another bikini top ruined!" She continued her rant. She enjoyed winding him up, the big mutt.

    "Guess you'll just have to go topless," he smirked.

    "You can roll up your tongue and put it back where it belongs, a girl always carries spares...just for emergencies...as they say."

    "Oh is that what they 'say'? I heard that they also 'say' - a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush." He seemed pleased with his effort.

    "So what does that mean, Einstein?"

    "Well I dunno, it just sorta sounded, you know, 'clever'."

    "Bruno, I got a pretty good idea where your brain is, and I ain't talking heads, get it?"

    "Aw Marie, I was just trying to talk smart, like your fancy friends."

    She lowered her voice, "How many times have I told you not to call me that - or the other name!"

    "Gee, sorry Chantelle, I kinda forgot."

    He seemed genuinely remorsful, but she feared he might well turn out be a liability. It may have been one big mistake hiring him - but it was too late now, he knew too much already......

  44. It had been a wrench leaving Paris, but here in the Caribbean again with ...him, well it brought so many good - and bad - memories back to her. She wondered how long they would have to sail, stopping here and there and moving on when questions from locals began to materialise.

    Bruno watched her as she expertly removed her bikini top without further smearing herself with chocolate. Leaning quite dangerously over the edge, she swished her bra top in the water, rinsing it clear once again.

    "So you decided to go topless!" he teased her. "Where's my camera?"

    "Don't you dare!" Chantelle shot back. "I'm putting this out to dry in a minute and I've another in my bag. Told you, we're always prepared."

    Bruno lent over to her bag while her back was turned, in order to get the top for her, not wanting to push the topless request too far. Rummaging around with one hand, he thought he'd found it, wrapped around something. Something hard. He glanced away from the water ahead for a second and looked down to his hand inside her bag, clutching a quite stunning red silky bikini top, wrapped around...a ... gun. She had a gun!

    Swerving slightly, he dropped the package in the bag, just in time for her to swish her gorgeous long locks back to smile at him with that winning smile. He made himself smile back. She hadn't seen.

    "Before I put the new top on, though,"... she winked, "I might just need some sun tan oil rubbed on. Can't we just...drift...for a while?"

    Unable to help himself, but with new information on his mind, he left his position and picked up the tanning oil as she turned herself over slowly and tantalisingly to face him.

  45. ouf! les murs du 6eme peuvent encore reserver de jolies surprises...si seulement ces habitants aussi!

  46. Chantelle stepped out of the shower. She could hear Bruno clumping about on the deck above.
    A decision had to be made. There were two problems.

    Number one, he had a big mouth.

    Number two, she was begining to have feelings for him, dumb as he was. This was not good news for any man.

    She caught her reflection in the mirror and smiled. That guy in Vienna sure was some plastic surgeon, she was as beautiful as ever. Her little bout of self-love was cut short by the sound of her GPS phone warbling.

    "Sh*t! I've left it on deck," she muttered.

    Up on deck, Bruno had already picked up the phone and started to read the text message.

    As she emerged on deck he turned to her, grinning, and asked "What's PDP babe?"

    She flew at him in a rage trying to grab the phone from his huge hand.

    "Give me that phone!" she yelled.

    Foolishly, Bruno thought it was time to play games.

    "Only if you ask nicely," he replied holding the phone at arms length.

    She flew at him again, only for him to slip on the wet decking, fall backwards and as he did so the phone slipped from his grasp and, almost as if in slow motion, slipped gently over the side and
    and disappeared beneath the waves.

    "Now look what you've done!" she screamed. "What did the message say?"

    Bruno was taken aback, he had never seen her so angry.

    "OK! I can't think straight. I dunno, something about a meeting in a pink pagoda"

    -"A meeting?"
    She was calmer now,
    -"A pink pagoda?"
    -"Was that all?"

    "Yeah, like I said, that's all I can remember"
    He paused,
    "So what's the big deal, and what's with the gun?"

    Chantelle met the last question with a impassive stare.

    "What gun might that be?" she enquired coldly.

    "The one in your bag you dumb broad."

    "Oh, you must mean this one" she answered.

    He stared open-mouthed at the Glock automatic which was now pointing straight at his chest.

    Two shots rang out.

    Bruno crumpled, stumbled, and fell into the clear blue waters of the Carribean.

    She knew he was dead, she did not miss at that range.

    "Bye, bye, Bruno dear, it was nice knowing you."

    It was the least she could do. After all, she had been very fond of him.

    It was only then that she realised she was completely naked..........

  47. Thinking rapidly she returned to the shower with a hair dye she kept in her bag for emergencies. In an hour she would be blonde and escaping from this mess.

    Quickly she dressed in a cotton shirt dress which had packed into purse-size, deck shoes and had tanned her skin into a shade rather too footballers-wives for her own taste. Calmly concentrating on the mirror, she applied long false eyelashes and a blue scarf, Pricess Grace style, covered her now blonde and shoulder length hair - she'd trimmed it to a Jackie O cut. What a great amalgam she now was. She rather liked it.

    Throwing all the remnants of her disguise overboard in a bag together with some sort of heavy bit of machinery she found in a cupboard, she set out starting up the engine again and speeding through the waves to her contact. She'd not seen him in years, but they were always there for each other when the need arose.

    It was near dark by the time she found the entrance to the secret place she knew she could dock. Through the vines she carefully went, tying up by the old wooden construction. On the mildew wall was the button which covered the vines and hid her boat from view. She didn't have to worry about its disposal. Mike would see to that ghastly business. All she needed now was a quick drink with him, giving the barest details and a lift to the airport.

    "Darling!" oozed Mike, appearing by her side, garbed in smoking jacket as per usual with two Scotches at the ready. "It's been an age. Come by the pool and tell me all about it."

    She laughed at his constant acceptance of her dilemmas but waved him away with a red kiss mark on his cheek.

    "No time, Sweetie. Thanks muchly but must be off. Can you drive me to the airport? Need to get a flight."

    "Your wish is my command, darling," said he with a flambouyant direction to the screen on the wall and a flick of the control in his hand. "I've a new addition...." he smiled.

    The screen revealed his new toy - a gleaming, new, private jet. Perfect.

  48. @ Phx-cdg : have a look at this link to an article from le Monde.fr about Miss Tic's exhibit in Galerie Leila Mordoch!!
    Crispy ;))

  49. "Well that certainly beats the old Coconut Airways," she purred.

    She gave him the once over, it had been a long time.

    "So,what's with the smoking jacket, Mikey? What's this, the Da Vinci Code or something?"

    "Got to keep up appearances you know, they like that sort of thing round here. That Ian Fleming has a lot to answer for."

    "Just one thing, old girl."

    "Yeah Mikey?"

    "Well it's a little difficult. You're very nice and you seem to know me, but who are you exactly?"

    Chantelle thought he must be losing it.

    She laughed, "Who the hell do you think I am?"

    Then she suddenly got it. Of course! - The plastic surgery!

    "Mikey, it's me, Chantelle!"

    "I don't think I know anyone by that name," he mumbled.

    "No, not Chantelle, it's Marie!"

    His eyes looked skywards. "Oh for God's sake woman make up your mind! - Anyway Marie doesn't look anything like you, even your hair's a different colour."

    Chantelle began to realise that this appearance/name change thing was proving a more than a little complicated.

    He looked her up and down "Still, you're a rather attractive young filly, if you don't mind me saying so."

    "Yeah, yeah, whatever. So are we flying to Paris or what?"

    "Certainly, my dear, All my facilities are at your disposal," he replied, with what she was sure was a wink......

    "Cinzano?" He woke her with a nudge.

    Where was she? She slowly came to, and the events of the last 24 hours unfolded in her mind.

    She looked towards the voice.

    "Mikey? Where are we?"

    "In my private jet, 20,000 feet above the Atlantic. We'll be in 'Paname' in two hours."

    "You said we were going to Paris, you no-good double crossing..."

    "Yes, but Paname is....Oh go back to sleep."

  50. As they touched expertly to ground, Mikey asked her once again who she was. Exhasperated, Marie suddenly hauled up her blouse exposing her stomach. There, just below her tummy button was the apple she had had tattooed when...when they'd been together.

    "I can't believe it!" whistled Mikey, "you have changed everything! My, but it's a good job."
    "Are you saying...?" demanded Marie.
    "No. Darling, no. Just - well, it's good! I'm glad you kept our apple though. Marie - stay with me tonight."

    He held onto her hand but knew she wouldn't.

    "I can't. I have someone to meet. He's from PDP." revealed Marie de Parie.

    "You got INto that club? How? I've been trying for two years!" complained Mikey.

    "I am... well, I have ways."

    "Ah, yes, I remember them well." sighed Mikey. "After your meeting, meet me at the Ritz. I shall be in my suite. Please. Come."

    The idea of the suite she once knew so well certainly appealed. She raised one eyebrow and batted her immaculate eyelashes.

    "Wait up." she told him.

    She immediately bought another phone and the first call she made was the reason she was here.

    "Eric." she breathed. "C'est moi. J'suis la. Ce soir....non, non...a minuit. Je viens... oh!" she turned as a female hand pulled her arm sharply. "Eric, il faut que j'y aille....!"

    She turned and looked straight into the dark eyes of ... Carla.

  51. "So we meet again Marie."

    "I think you must have made a mistake, my name is Chantelle, I don't think we have met, Madame"

    "Cut the crap Marie!" a male voice barked out behind her.

    Marie spun round and her jaw dropped. For once in her life, she was speechless.

    "I believe you have met Inspector Jacques LeBlanc of Interpol. He carries out some little tasks for me from time to time," said Carla smugly.

    "Yeah, we've met. How are you Bruno? Enjoy your swim?" Marie was back on form.

    "You've made some enemies in high places, Marie."
    She detected a hint of regret in his voice. The old Marie magic was still working.

    Marie gave a wry smile.
    "So let's see. You switched the real bullets for blanks, right? I must be slipping, falling for that old trick. Still we had some good times, didn't we.....Jacques?"

    "Enough of these reminiscences!"
    snapped Carla.

    Marie raised her eyebrows. There was a definite note of jealousy in Carla's voice

    "We need to get down to business," continued Carla, "We know you have a meeting at the Pink Pagoda. You wiil go there as arranged and pick up the package. You will then deliver it to me at the Le diner en blanc this evening which will be held La Concorde. You will be well paid."

    "Isn't the location of Le diner en blanc supposed to be a secret? enquired Marie,suspiciously.

    "I have spies everywhere!" replied Carla imperiously.

    Marie winked at Jacques, "So I have noticed."

    Beneath her cool exterior, Marie's mind was working overtime. The package would contain the low down on PDP - names, times, dates - everything. Eric trusted her, he was the one man in the world she would never let down.

    "You will come dressed in white with a picnic table and chair, oh, and bring some nice food and wine, we must blend in"

    "And masks of course?" asked Marie.

    "Er..why of course, I mustn't be recognised" Marie knew she was now in control.

    "Exactly, but how will I recognise you in the crowd?" enquired Marie, helpfully.

    "Er..I hadn't thought of that."

    Carla was now in the palm of her hand.

    "I've got an idea Carla, you're a great artist, a wonderful musician, why don't you bring your guitar and give an impromtu performance tonight. no one will know its you and the diners will love it!"

    "Yes, yes, the world needs to hear my music!" beamed Carla.

    "Start at exactly 8.30pm, I should be there by then." Marie was running the show now.

    "But don't try any of your tricks Marie," Jacues warned, " I'll be following your every move."

    "Leave it all to me babe." Marie assured him.....

    La Concorde was a sea of white, packed with diners and hangers-on.

    Marie had already spotted Carla, fully masked, dressed like some sort of hippie with her guitar over her shoulder. My God, she thought, she looks like Yoko Ono on a bad day.

    She smoothed her little off- white vintage Givency number and slipped on her elegant patent court shoes. Eat your heart out Audrey Hepburn!
    - She went in for the kill.

    "Do you have the package?" whispered Carla.

    "Do you have the dough?" responded Marie.

    "How do I know the package is geniune?" demanded Carla.

    "Ask lover boy," she motioned towards Jacques.

    Jacques nodded.

    They swapped packages discreetly.

    "Carla quick, you must sing! The world is waiting!" urged Marie.

    Oblivious to everything, Carla, grabbed her guitar and started to sing.

    Marie covered her ears and turned to Jacques, "Let' get out of here babe."

    "Fifty/fifty split as agreed?"
    aked Jacques.

    "As agreed, sure you don't want to come along for the ride?"

    "Too dangerous a ride babe, bye Maria"

    "Hope Carla enjoys reading those shredded back copies of Le Monde" he shouted back at her.

    The singing had stopped. Marie turned round and couldn't help a chuckle at the sight of Carla being led away kicking and screaming by two policemen.
    - Didn't she know that it was a very serious offence to play an instrument in public without written permission?

  52. "she looks like Yoko Ono on a bad day"... LOOOOL ;-)
    I'm just trying to imagine small Nicolas with the same long hair and small glasses as John ;-)

  53. Drummond and Lynn ~ all my deep respect for your performance ... I'm all with you !!!!!!
    I trust you, you are the only one in the world that would never let down. That's really big :)

  54. LOL Thib how funny!
    Thank you Anonyme. Wow now we have TWO readers! :D

  55. Sorry I'm late, Lynn and Drummond!

    Magnifique! Engrossing! Looking forward to the next one, wherever that may be ...

  56. Merci !
    Thank you for all messages !

    I am one of three students who made this short, " Reulf "