Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Good old 2CV

I bet the shape of this car will bring back a lot of memories to my French viewers... This automobile is called a 2CV (2 chevaux, two horsepower) and was extremely popular in France between 1948 and 1990. It is now pretty rare to see one in Paris and when I saw this one - driven by this guy with a French cap I could not resist taking the picture. And it feels good to smile a little after yesterday's photo... BTW, you can see another version on LondonDailyPhoto today...

Monday, February 27, 2006

Ilan Halimi: In memoriam

On January 21 a young guy called Ilan had a crush on a girl who visited his shop. He took her on a date which turned out to be a trap. He ended up chained, tortured and kept prisoner for 2 weeks, then left dying near train tracks in the suburbs of Paris. The gang that abducted him did it because he was Jewish and, as such, his family was supposed to be rich and afford to pay a ransom. This story moved a lot of people in France and not only from the Jewish community. I am glad and proud that yesterday, about 200,000 slightly less than 100 000 people marched peacefully in memory of him.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Willy Ronis Photo exhibit

If you come to Paris (before May 27) and if you' are interested in old black and white Paris pictures I strongly recommend you go and see the Willy Ronis photo exhibit at l'Hotel de Ville (Paris Town hall). You will see brilliant pictures from the beginning of the 20th century. If you want a preview click here. As you can see, this exhibit is pretty popular, but if you arrive early enough in the morning, around 10am, but not before, because it only opens at 10!- it's not so bad).

PS : please welcome three newcomers in the City Daily Photo network: Wiesbaden (Germany) and Richmond (Virginia, USA) and, as of today Tallinn in Estonia...

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Fast Chess

I took this shot in an open air art market in the 14th arrondissement where these two guys had a stand next to each other. To keep busy, between two customers, they played chess on a mini chess board standing up. It's not exactly the same as Lisi showed in her HongKongDailyPhoto blog about deep blue but I think we can consider this a French version!

Friday, February 24, 2006

Libertad por Ingrid Betancourt

Ingrid Betancourt is a Franco-Colombian lady who ran for Presidency in Colombia in 2002. Unfortunately, on February 23, that same year, she got abducted by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc, in French). Since then (that is, for 4 years now...), she is being kept prisoner somewhere in Colombia together with 4 000 other hostages. Yesterday, to make sure we would not forget about her, her committee organized a demonstration on the Pont des Arts (as shown on this shot). I also took these photos.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

The Cartier Foundation

On Boulevard Raspail, there is La fondation Cartier (the Cartier Foundation) which is a fantastic place for modern art (don't miss it if you come to Paris!!). The building itself (check on their Web site), made by Jean Nouvel, is worth the visit. The magic starts at the entrance with this amazing tree and this huge pot (according to what I have been able to find on the Web it was made by by famous italian designer Alessandro Mendini, but I am not 100% sure. If somebody has the info...).

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Naive Street Art

I took this shot near La Madeleine on the way to work yesterday morning. I think this window shop belongs to a Habitat outlet that is currently being redone, but I am not sure. Anyway, although some people may object that these drawings are very - too? - simple, I find them pretty neat.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Ricardo Menon's Tomb

In Montparnasse (14th arrondissement) there is a famous cemetery (not as famous as Père Lachaise although it is definitely worth the visit) in which a lot of famous people are burried. I chose to show you the grave of Ricardo Menon who was the personal assistant to famous artist Nicky de Saint Phalle, and who died in 1989. To remember him for ever Nicky de Saint Phalle made this great sculpture (click here for a close up).

Monday, February 20, 2006

Really Smart Car

Do you remember this post where I explained how this little car - called La Smart, in French - was used to run advertising campaigns? Well here is another one, precisely to promote this car. Basically it says: "2,50 meters long; a pleasure to park" for "Only 5,50 € per day". Have a good week...

Sunday, February 19, 2006

From the rooftop of the Beaubourg Center

You probably have a picture like this if you went to Paris and went up the Beaubourg Center - also known as the Pompidou Center (after the name of a former President of the Republic). This very famous, controversial art center is located in the center of the city and has a glass and metal structure that makes it very particular. If you look at this picture you can guess where I took this shot.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Turning the 70's into the "10's"

I took this photo on the Front de Seine (Seine left embankment), in the 15th arrondissement, in the west of Paris. These red shapes belong to a skyscraper and are typical of what architects did in the 70s (the Front de Seine was built between 1967 and 1979). This area is now totally passé and there is a renewal project underway (delivery date 2009/10) with , as usual, a lot of controversy. If you speak French - and are interested in this story - do watch this video and/or pay a visit to this site. You can even take part in a forum about Paris architecture.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Another view of Sacre Coeur

Doesn't it look like Rome? And though, no, it's Paris. I took this shot from the beginning of Rue Laffitte and the church you can see first is called Notre Dame de Lorette and the one in the background is, as you may have recognized already, the Sacre Coeur (located on Montmartre).

Today, I would like you to welcome two new daily photo bloggers :
Berlin and Seoul. Two interesting cities that I look forward to discover through a daily photo!

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Summer fruit in winter?

If you come to Paris you might want to try Fauchon, a famous luxury grocery store (like Fortnum & Mason in London) on Place de la Madeleine. They have - among many other things - the best Croissants in Paris (and not that more expensive than anywhere else) and are also famous for their exotic fruit that you can find in Paris in any seasons. If you want to know more about their history, click here.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Cité Bergère

If you walk down the rue du Faubourg Montmartre, not far from the Grands Boulevards métro station, you will see this entrance to an open air passage (narrow street) called Cité Bergère. Although it is not very well maintained it is still worth a visit especially at night when it's all lit. Frédéric Chopin lived there for six months in 1832 and, according to historians, several people got killed there on December 4, 1851, right after Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte coup . Victor Hugo even wrote a poem after the riots called Souvenir de la nuit du 4.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Paris, the city of love...

Yes people, it's Valentine day! Of course being in Paris I could have looked for something similar to this unforgettable shot by Robert Doisneau but instead I chose another symbol of love: two pigeons "making out" on a window (actually the one of my new office!) with the rooftops of Paris in the background. Less romantic? Yeah, well... By the way I would like to take this opportunity to proudly celebrate my 100 000th visitor (who actually showed up yesterday around 2 am GMT)! Thank you all for your loyalty. Also, since the daily photo family increases almost everyday now, please welcome our latest member: Lisi, from Hongkong.

Monday, February 13, 2006

François Mauriac's Statue

On a charming little square (place Alphonse Deville) close to famous hotel Lutetia in the 6th arrondissement I came across this sculpture of famous French writer Francois Mauriac by Haïm Kern. François Mauriac was born in 1885 and died in 1970, he wrote fantastic novels (I don't know how many of them have been translated) and was elected to the Académie Française in 1933.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Perfect match!

Parisian women are so chic that they think of matching their outfits with the window shop they are going to visit during the day!! I am surprised her Dachshund does not have a raincoat the same colour though... By the way, did you know that Dachshund originally come from Germany where they were bred to pursue badgers into their burrows. The standard dachshund stands about 7 to 10 inches (18 to 25 cm) and weighs 16 to 32 pounds (7 to 14.5 kg); the miniature is shorter and weighs no more than 11 pounds (5 kg)...

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Stop by the fishmonger

Today is grocery shopping day. How about scallops? 3 kilos (6.6 Pounds) for 15 euros, not bad... And you, what will you buy today?!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Carry on luggage

Old lady, avenue du Général Leclerc (near Place d'Alésia) in the 14th arrondissement. She probably is a homeless person and has to carry all her belongings with her at all time.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Baccarat, place de la Madeleine

On yesterday's post Lucy asked: "I think this is near the famous crystal maker (forget the name) ..." Well yes Lucy, Saint Augustin's church is close to the famous Baccarat crystal maker located 11, place de la Madeleine (8th arrondissement) where I took this photo. Their crystalworks are absolutely stunning. It was King Louis XV who, in 1764, gave Bishop de Montmorency-Laval of Metz permission to create a glass works in the village of Baccarat located in Lorraine in eastern France.

PS : Fabrice, from BristolDailyPhoto emailed me to let me know that he he cannot continue his daily posting for he is moving to the US. If anyone in Bristol is interested in taking over his blog, please let me know. I'll pass on the message.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Saint Augustin Church

Few people visit the Saint Augustin Church (8th arrondissement) although it is a magnificent building. It was built between 1860 to 1871 upon plans drawn by Victor-Louis Baltard and was the first church, in Paris, to use a metal structure covered with stone. It is also known for its organ, one of the first to be powered by electricity.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Everlasting Flowers

I know artificial flowers have a bad reputation: they look tacky, they don't smell and they catch dust... But these ones are really different. They come from the window shop of the Boulevard Malesherbes outlet of SIA Decoration, a company created by Sonja Ingegerd Andersson in 1963 in the South of Sweden. She started by making paper flowers and designing printed fabrics that she displayed in her garden for her friends... and now SIA is almost everywhere in the world!

Monday, February 06, 2006

Paris Barbour Ad

No, this Barbour ad does not currently run in London, neither in Bristol nor in Brighton (our latest member of the Daily Photo Family!) but in... Paris. And yes, although there is no garment more British than the good old Barbour (some) French people are also very fond of it - I think I even have one in my cellar somewhere! Love the way they painted the Cab.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Winter Games

Right in front of the town hall in the center of Paris, they have installed a bunch of bobsleigh tracks for kids. Huge success!

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Freedom of the Press

I thought today was a good day to publish this photo of the Statue of Liberty here in Paris. You've undoubtedly heard about the cartoons published recently in Denmark about the prophet Muhammed which have raised a lot of questions around the freedom of the press. The answer seems to vary greatly from one side of the world to the other. Regardless of what you personally think, we must admit that although many countries - including France - claim to uphold freedom of speech, there are still jokes that remain socially unacceptable. Here, for example, there is no way you can joke about the holocaust, races, or the handicapped. Jokes about homosexuals have also become very offensive whereas they were accepted less than a decade ago. Jokes about religion - and especially Catholicism, the historical religion of France - have been accepted for a long time here.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Who painted that?

Today I would like to show you a close up of a painted wall that you will see if you stand at the crossing of rue des Archives and rue des Haudriettes (3rd arrondissement). I have been unable to decipher the signature of this painting, if anyone knows the name of the artist please tell me. It reminds me of the update on this post where I was also looking for the name of the artist(s) and somebody (Roswitha) found out for us.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Paris and the invasion of scooters...

Due to recent traffic restrictions in Paris, more and more people have started drinving two wheel vehicles (you just need a regular licence to drive a scooter - under 125 cc). It is more dangerous than a car but very convenient and very quick. As a matter of fact, unlike in the United States it is still tolerated to weave in between cars, to take bus lanes and to park on sidewalks! It will not last very long though... In my neighbourhood they built parking spaces for 2 wheel vehicles and now they give tickets if you park outside these spaces. What can I say, things change...

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

How to tow away a garbage truck in Paris?

I had no idea how big trucks/Lorries were towed away when they break down. Now I know... They (well, the driver...) call(s) this company and ask(s) for the "big one" which is no less than a huge American tractor (real name: Kenworth W900 - I bet La camioneuse knows everything about it ;)). Very unusual shot in Paris that I took on the way to work Monday morning. Do pay a visit to the towing company they have amazing photo galleries.