Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Back to the drawing board

Yesterday I went to the Salon du dessin (drawing exhibition), an art show that was held at La Bourse (yes, where I also took this photo). I used the word "drawing", but in fact it's much more than just plain drawings, but real masterpieces made between the XVIth century and the XXth. Now you're going to say: "how come you're not showing us one of these masterpieces?!" Well, simply because I think it would have been too easy!

Monday, March 30, 2009


Did I tell you it's cold in Paris at the moment? So cold that last Saturday a strange phenomenon happened around the Louvre Pyramid: everybody froze for 5 minutes! Of course I'm kidding. All this was planned by Charles Nouÿrit a French entrepreneur who also enjoys organizing happenings such as Freeze parties or No Pants days. Such an event is hard to capture on camera for, precisely, all photos are motionless. However, thanks to the very imaginative poses some of the participants took, you can have a pretty good idea of the effect (the most spectacular being the sudden silence). I made an Animoto especially for the occasion.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Anti tax haven demonstration

I can't say I really missed them, but since they come with the city... Them ? The demonstrations, of course! Today, I came across an Anti Tax Haven one. Guess where they organized it? Right on Place de la Bourse (stock market), of course! And as there is nothing like a good set to get the media's attention (including PDP's!), they built their own little tax haven island in the middle of the street, with real sand and a beach chair! Fun, but I'm afraid it will take much more than that to eradicate tax havens...

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Red letter day

It feels good to be back home after a month... You know, check that nothing burnt, leaked or cracked... Fight the jet lag, empty you suitcase, check the mail... Talking about checking mail look at what I found in my mailbox this morning: a letter with two PDP stamps on it that someone - I won't disclose any names! - sent me after printing them on Zazzle. Isn't that nice? All this to wish me a good and safe return and encourage me to take more photos of Paris. I will!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Back to Paris

I had a wonderful time in New Zealand and Australia (have a look at Adelaide Daily Photo for a photo proof!) but everything comes to an end... When you read this I'll be on a plane to Paris. And as it's usually the tradition on PDP when I return to my homeland, here is a photo of the Eiffel Tower. I took it a few days before leaving and I kept it especially for the occasion! Happy to be back among you all ;)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Café Limonade

It's my last day down under. Pretty soon I'm going to give up pubs and go back to little cafés, around the corner ;) This one says "Café Limonade" on its awning. Limonade was imported to France by the Italians during the 17th century and the places that would sell it became known as "Limonadiers" and would also sell liquors. Towards the end of the 17th century coffee became more popular than limonade and soon awnings would show Café or Café-Limonade. This one, called le Café Brébant, does not originate from the 17th century; it's a brand new place that was decorated the old fashioned way on purpose.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Terrace Madeleine

In Paris, the weather is not always hot enough to enjoy a nice lunch outside, but still, Parisians would kill to own an apartment with a terrace! They would even kill more to own one in a nice location, like this one that I photographed on Place de la Madeleine on a sunny day. Needless to say that the price must be pretty high! If you want to dream, have a look at this site; some of the apartments are stunning!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Where all Parisians shop

OK, it's not a very glamorous photo, but I realized recently that I never showed you this French institution: Monoprix. Monoprix (which means "one price") is a kind of big convenience stores where you can find everything, including food. The chain started in the 1930's during the crisis ; it was then copied by others such as Uniprix or Prisunic that have all been bought by Monoprix. When I was young, Monoprix was considered too cheap to offer good quality products but in the past 10 years or so, they started upscaling their offer. Now they have a much better image and even opened smaller outlets called Daily Monop' open daily (except on Sundays) until Midnight where the rich urban crowd buys its fresh organic precooked gourmet dinner!

Monday, March 23, 2009

A view on the Théâtre de la ville

You're looking at Le Théâtre de la ville, a theatre located at Place du Chatelet in front of the Théâtre du Chatelet from where I took this photo. The Théâtre de la ville was built between 1860 and 1862 after the plans of architect Gabriel Davioud. It then burnt in 1871 after the riots of La Commune, then rebuilt on the exact same plans (except the inside) in 1874. The famous French actress Sarah Bernhartd "rented" it in 1899 and gave it her name (until the German occupation).

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Evelyne in Red by Cooper

You're looking at a sculpture by Randy Cooper, a Californian artist whose work I love. He makes sculptures in iron wire mesh, which project "Shadow Sculptures" on the wall. It's very creative and very interesting to look at. I took this photo in a gallery on the Place des Vosges, but his work can be found in various places.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Wholesaler in Le Sentier

I already mentioned the historical area of Paris called Le Sentier (after the name of one of the major streets that runs through it) which is also the heart of the French clothing wholesale. As I already mentionned, it was originally the Jews who had most of the shmates (clothe in Yiddish) business these, but now, they are more and more replaced by Chinese and Pakistani. Here is a proof! The René Somekh business does not exist anymore, even if its plaque remains...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Bateau Mouche

Yes, I know, it's a classic, but I know you like the bridges of Paris! This photo one is interesting because of the "Bateau Mouche", the flat boat you can see on the left passing under the bridge. You have to get on one of those if you come to Paris; it may be a little touristy, but, as you can see these boats have projectors on both sides, so that you can see the stunning buildings as you progress on the Seine. I recommend to take an evening "cruise" during a hot summer night.

Thursday, March 19, 2009


I may be miles alway [I'm currently in Uluru/Ayers Rock and hopefully still alive, providing the many venomous reptiles of the region left me alone!] I know that today there is a big demonstration in Paris. As you guessed, I did not take this photo there, but during a previous one. It does not really matter as the demands are pretty much the same as last time: more money! If you cannot read French, this poster says: Liberty, Equality, fraternity: my ass!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Love is the answer!

I know I already showed you a graffiti by "Mr. Brainwash" aka Thierry Guetta, but I don't resist posting one again! I'm sure you'll agree with the message, even though it sounds a little too easy! I hope I'll get to meet this guy one day.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Eglise des missions de Paris

Here is a place, I'm sure that very few Parisians know about. It's the crypt of L'Eglise des Missions Etrangères de Paris, a church that was built between 1683 and 1697 and that is dedicated to the Catholic missionaries that France would send to a lot of countries in Asia where it wanted to increase its influence (Indochina, Siam - now Thailand, etc.). Of course, nowadays missionaries are less numerous (379 according to Wikipedia), but the place still exists and has one of the largest private gardens in Paris! Alas, you cannot visit them... But still, FYI, this church is located 128 rue du Bac, in the 7th arrondissement. [Note to the people in Sydney who want to join a little PDP gathering while I'm there.]

Monday, March 16, 2009

Les Parisiennes (de Kiraz) !

You remember this photo of  "Les Parisiennes"? Well, here is another kind of Parisiennes, that most French know and appreciate. They were created by Edmond Kirazian (better known as Kiraz) in 1959, an artist of Armenian origins who emigrated to France right after WWII. He created them for a French magazine called "Jour de France" that targeted the typical middle class French housewife of the 60's. Pretty wise in the beginning, they quickly adopted the less strict moral rules of the 70's, especially through fashion (ie the miniskirt they are wearing in this photo!) and language. I also discovered they appear(ed) in Playboy Magazine in a less dressed version! I took this photo at Le Musée Carnavalet where there was a exhibition dedicated to them. [Note to the people in Sydney who want to join a little PDP gathering while I'm there.]

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Spring is coming up?

I hear this weekend may be sunny in Paris. It's about time! This year winter has been particularly tough, we've had snow several times (to my satisfaction I must say!) and an exceptional freezing period that lasted several days - and prevented me to take my scooter!). Let me celebrate the coming of spring, not with a flower, but with a very Parisian scene; the reflexion of the sun on a street sign located on l'Ile Saint Louis. [Note to the people in Sydney who want to join a little PDP gathering while I'm there.]

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Jeu de jambes

I know I could have taken this photo anywhere, but I swear these are Parisian legs! I love the general atmosphere of this photo and the light and shadow atmosphere. That's all! [Note to the people in Sydney who want to join a little PDP gathering while I'm there.]

Friday, March 13, 2009

Institut du monde Arabe

Here is a building that I only showed once (and a long time ago!) on PDP and though it's really worth visiting if you're around. It's called l'Institut du Monde Arabe (the Arab World Institute) and not only is the building in itself a real masterpiece, but on top of that they often have interesting exhibitions. At the moment, and until the end of March, they have one about Napoleon and Egypt. I took this photo near the entrance, I love the perspective effect. [Note to the people in Sydney who want to join a little PDP gathering while I'm there.]

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Partying in the street

You're all wonderful. Thank you so much for your nice anniversary messages. Like I said several times, you are my fuel! I thought I could celebrate with a joyful photo, taken after someone obviously had a little party in the street! I like the confettis, but I like even more the movement brought by the two legs over them. Champagne! [Note to the people in Sydney who want to join a little PDP gathering while I'm there.]

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Four year anniversary

Four years! It's been 4 years that I've been posting a photo of Paris a day without missing one day, even when I'm on holiday - like at the moment. [I'm currently on my way to Sydney FYI]. Of course, it's sometimes a constraint, but it's also rewarding in many aspects: I get to learn more about my home town, I get to improve my photography skills, and last, but certainly not least, I get to meet wonderful people from all over the world! I'm also grateful to the more than 500 other city daily photo bloggers who have found the same pleasure as I in this adventure. Thank you everyone, new visitors and old.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Metro ramp at La Madeleine

I remember taking this photo at the Place de la Madeleine. My eyes immediately caught sight of the metro ramp where people were going up and down in a sort of artistic urban ballet! I finally ended up choosing this one because I thought it was the most aesthetic. Don't ask me why!

Monday, March 09, 2009

Rollerskating in the rain

Living in the north of France, I'm used to thinking, "If I were in the South, it would be warmer, or there would be less rain" - like in this photo that I took on the new Passerelle Simone de Beauvoir. What I'm experiencing is the exact opposite where I am at the moment (on the south Island of New Zealand); the more South I go, the colder and rainier it gets. Of course, it's the beginning of Fall here, so it's not that bad, and the scenery is breathtaking, so...

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Tête de veau Sauce Gribiche

Not only do we eat frog legs (remember this post?) but all sorts of other odd animal parts that would probably be considered as disgusting by most of the people in the world. Let me show you a perfect example: la tête de veau (veal head)! However, it all depends on the way you cook it. And precisely, in France we're pretty good at seasoning (some will say "hiding") the taste of things. For example, here, this tête de veau usually comes with a sauce called Sauce Gribiche, which is to die for... I looked on David Lebovitz's blog (the "official" English recipe source in Paris!) but he's only into deserts, not tête de veau. So if you're really interested, here is the recipe in French.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

It says no bikes!

This could be seen as a provocation: a bike attached to a street sign that says explicitly: no bikes! And though, nobody really cares... In every country there is a certain room around the law and people know from experience what's OK and what is not. When you're a foreigner, it's always tricky to adjust to the local rules. That's also part of the fun when you travel, isn't it?

Friday, March 06, 2009

Sunset over Paris

Yesterday evening I saw one of the most stunning sunsets I've ever seen in my life (I'm currently in Rotorua, an amazing site in the Northern part of New Zealand). Of course we don't have such things in Paris, but I also like when the sun goes down on the city. That is why today, I'm offering you a view of the sunset from my office (and before you say it... No, I'm not trying to show you how late I work LOL!).

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Roger La Grenouille

It was hard to come up with a decent photo, because the place is not really photo worthy, but it's a real Paris institution. This restaurant is called :"Roger la grenouille" (Roger the frog) and I remember hearing about it when I was a little boy. As you can imagine, from the name of the place, the specialty of the place is frog legs [but not only!]. For yes, as you probably know we do eat frog legs in France (that is also why the Brits call us "Frogs"!). I had them once and did not like them. But I never went to Roger La Grenouille, I hear they cook them 9 different ways... Maybe I'll give it a second try one day...

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Another tribute to the musée Maillol

Here is another musée Maillol photo... I saved it because I really like its framing; I took it on the first floor (for Americans: 2nd floor!) where they had - and still have until March 23, this temporary Russian painter exhibit from the Georges Costakis collection. They also have a special tribute to Dina Vierny, the muse of Maillol, the one who modeled for him and opened the museum in 1995 and who just died at the age of 90.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Another victim of the Internet?

I just read in the plane a few days ago that the Rocky Mountain News, a Denver area newspaper was going to close down for good, a few months before its 150th anniversary. "Due to evolutions in the media business, the article said..." You bet! Everywhere in the world it's the same. I thought this shop would illustrate this downturn perfectly. I also thought to myself, "What would Gutenberg think if he could see that more than 500 years after his fabulous invention (he is said to have invented the printing process circa 1450), the ink has now turned virtual!?" FYI, I took this shot on rue de Savoie in the 6th arrondissement.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Obama Superman

I found this graffiti near the Centre Beaubourg, so I suppose it counts as "art" no? It was done by an artist known as "Mr. Brainwash" aka Thierry Guetta (see his excellent website here). Even as I sit here on the other side of the world from Paris, I can tell you that Obamamania is alive and well. What do you think of the craze?

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Theme day Glass

It's not because I'm away that I'm going to miss a Theme Day! This month's theme is "Glass". I've had this photo for quite a while (I took it at Le Procope, if you remember) and I thought it would do the job for today. It's a digestif (an alcohol one takes at the end of a meal - not me(!), but one of the guests that I was with). I love the way they present it "on a bed of ice". That is all for today. When you read this, I should be on my way to my final destination (well, to start with...): Auckland. Click here to view thumbnails for all participants