Italian trains, wine but no wi-fi

just saying…

We spent most of the day yesterday on an a train of some sort, some good, some better than good, none as pleasant as a Swiss train though sadly!

Starting in Paris very early, we got a long way in a very short time t0 Lyon (250 miles) in 1 hour 40 minutes to be exact….

Once in Italy, although armed with waiter service and a nicer train, there was a lack of wi-fi even in first class, and a seemingly pedestrian pace to our travel – I could have cycled it quicker in fact.

So why then does it take a further seven hours to go as far again?

I think the answer is something to do with the Alps…who put them there?

cake
cake
Paris from Pompidou
Paris from Pompidou
Paris
Paris
Pompidou view 2
Pompidou view 2
Pompidou
Pompidou
Gare du Lyon
Gare du Lyon
all day on a slow train
all day on a slow train
first ice cream of the trip
first ice cream of the trip
Platform 4, not Platform 2
Platform 4, not Platform 2
S.Zeno

Big Amarone
Big Amarone
Verona at last

tourist

 

Pompidou Centre, Martial Raysse

Another day, another gallery – or in this case,

LE CENTRE POMPIDOU

Welcome to the Pompidou Centre!
Welcome to the Pompidou Centre!

Welcome to the Pompidou Centre – a sophisticated mix of modern art and overpriced cafe’s in the heart of Paris just up from Hotel du Ville.

Following a bumpy ride on the 69 bus from Boulevard Voltaire,  refrshed with coffee and cake, we arived ready to tackle the Martial Raysse exhibition on the sixth floor – with a great view over Paris thrown in for 11 euros.

What a fun show it turned out to be – amazing!

Obviously, Raysse is a French painter; a self-taught artist whose early works were assemblages which included plastic objects.

This appropriation of prefabricated materials led to his association with Nouveau réalisme. Raysse exhibited a world, new, antiseptic and modern. His approach anticipated that of the Pop artists, who likewise used objects and images deriving from advertising.

During the 1960s Raysse began to make more pictorial compositions, based on images from advertising as well as on high art. He also produced paintings in which a deliberate roughness of execution is emphasised by the superimposition of a single neon line. Raysse began at this time to create his own prototypes as another way of continuing to elevate bad taste and falsity to the level of art.

In the mid 1960s Raysse’s work developed around a number of recurrent themes; in particular he concentrated on the contours of a portrait, a mouth or an eye, repeating them endlessly using all kinds of visual formulae, and drawing on the most diverse types of materials.

He gave up his pictorial explorations in the atmosphere of the events of 1968 in France. When he returned to painting, his work had undergone an important change. Little by little he moved away from the urban world towards a return to nature, a bucolic ideal of a gentle and calm community with reminiscences of Poussin and of mythology. He used pastel and tempera to depict timeless magical or fantastic scenes, anticipating the vogue for mythological subjects that appeared in the work of other painters in the 1980s.

His more recent work, including ‘ici Plage, comme ici-bas’  a huge room-filling beach scene (pictured below) and produced as recently as 2012, is both highly entertaining and also most pleasing to the eye.

I’m no art critic, but it reminded me of the Grayson Perry tapestries ‘The Vanity of Small Differences’ in London a few years ago – I like it a lot.

Here are some snaps.

photocrati gallery

and here is a more substantial Guardian review of the same retrospective show

http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/jul/01/martial-raysse-retrospective-pompidou-review

You really can’t go wrong in Paris, still off to Verona tomorrow, so that’s enough of that!

Musée d’Orsay & the left bank, Paris

Of all the places we come back to time and time again in Paris, the Musée d’Orsay  is our favourite.

Musee d’Orsay

Sitting calmly on the left bank of the Seine. It is housed in the former Gare d’Orsay, a Beaux-Arts railway station built between 1898 and 1900.

The museum holds mainly French art dating from 1848 to 1915, including paintings, sculptures, furniture, and photography.

It houses the largest collection of impressionist and post-impressionist masterpieces in the world, by painters including MonetManetDegasRenoir,CézanneSeuratSisleyGauguin and Van Gogh.

Many of these works were held at the Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume prior to the museum’s opening in 1986.

We took a guided tour this time, well worth the six euros, an hour and a half duration starting at the information kiosk, it was a good way to see the highlights, with an audio commentary from a highly knowledgeable french art historian.

After the tour, we took a stroll along the left bank, a drink here, a sandwich there, and a game of ping pong for good measure – always lots to do, a great part of Paris!

 

 

Eurostar to Paris

Setting off on a bit of a European tour today, looking forward to seeing the world whiz by the window.

Mrs B leaving Macclesfield, not for the first time!
Mrs B leaving Macclesfield, not for the first time!

Happy to be in Paris now, time to test my Henri Cartier Bresson skills, a bit of street photography coming up, that is if I recover from a 30 minute yomp…nobody mentioned draging my 20 kilo case on wheels for miles across Paris to take in the rustic joys of the Maraie area?

Metro....its closed
Metro….its closed

Time for some R&R, I will keep you posted with my new format Blog, using wordpress and Photocrati – anything could happen, next stop Place de la Republique…

Paris is a place I love

Paris, France

Paris is a place I love

visited this place so many imes, first as a student in 1980, and probably most years since, on my own, with my family and with colleagues.

Paris is always beautiful, and always wears out your feet!

I took these pictures in summer 2013, at the end of a European rail tour before returning to the UK on Eurostar