Thursday, October 18, 2007


Fantin-Latour in a French art magazine I saw this Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904) painting in Pratique des arts, a French art journal - a retrospective was on in Lausanne, Switzerland. He's one of my all-time favorite still life painters. Hmmm..too tempting to resist.
Departure from Gare du lyon I hopped on an early TGV Lyria train from Gare de Lyon yesterday.

Arrival in Lausanne And 4 hours later I was ready to devour Fantin-Latour at the Fondation L'Hermitage.

Can you guess why?

a detailInstant love for me.
my favorite Fantin-Latour One of Fantin-Latour's supreme still lifes painted as a gift to his future fiance, Victoria Dubourg. They met while both were copying paintings at the Louvre in the 1860s - romantic, non. This still life is so delicate, so balanced, so airy. Utter perfection and so worth the trip to Lausanne. I did not attempt to steal a photo anywhere in this museum. The Swiss police would have been after me armed with their Swiss Army knives and their Swiss Military watches in TWO SECONDS. 

The museum is set on a hill above Lausanne so I took the scenic walk down through a woodsie park. The weather could not have been more perfect.the walk down the hillThe footpath gets rather steep at times.

I stopped at a sweet little vegan cafe, La Cafetiere Verte, for a dish of curry to keep me going.

The old town The footpath ends in the "old" town.

signs in Lausanne I took a wrong turn and discovered

All these old tradional signs grouped together.

This one is for Mistress LongEarsThis one made me think of Jeanette, Mistress of Long Ears Manor - a rabbit fancier par excellance.

I spotted some Swiss paper silhouettes of chalets and farm scenes enroute back to the train station.
And of course the classic Swiss Military watch.
One Swiss souvenir I forgot to buy before taking the train back to Paris. For your eyes only.


  1. Anonymous3:21 AM

    You did this all in ONE DAY!?
    What fun!
    What an adventure!
    Just as good as searching for macarons :)

  2. Anonymous3:43 AM

    Makes me want to hop a train! You are our new Heidi Girl!

  3. Switzerland ...may be my new destination ...the little café seems wonderful

  4. Anonymous6:46 AM

    Hello Swiss Breakfasts !!!

    You've been creating extensions in all directions ...
    I would have loved to see that exhibition !

  5. You are a pretty spunky traveller! Good for you. And such a splendid destination. I had to laugh out loud about Marie-Noëlle's comment, "Miss Swiss Breakfasts". Your photos of "La Cafetiere Verte" are both incredible expressive and beautiful. Frame worthy.

    Taking a wrong turn was the right thing to do! :-)

  6. Anonymous7:33 AM

    You are not the only Fantin-Latour lover. You took the trip of a lifetime. His work is in a class by itself.
    Were you affected by the transportation strike in Paris? Oh, well, it's nicer on foot anyway.
    Thanks for the treat!

  7. Anonymous7:55 AM

    One more time a wonderful post!Of course, like you, I adore Fantin-Latour!

  8. Beautiful paintings and for you to have this opportunity to take the scenic walk there, wow, that must have been magnifique :)

  9. Moments in time. Fantin-Latour captures them beautifully. As do you. Thanks for the refreshing Swiss walk. Bien fait. All best, Jan

  10. Wow! This is an amazing post today. You are certainly making the most of this Paris Trip. Did you do this all alone? Did you get photos on the train?
    Thanks for the side trip. I love the paintings.

  11. Fantin-Latour, my all time favorite. regarding your comment on my blog:
    Merci beaucoup.
    Tes paroles d'encouragement me nourissent l'ame.

  12. Anonymous11:56 AM

    I had to smile--I also immediately thought of Jeanette when I saw that sign! Good catch. Carol, now THIS is my kind of exploring. How wonderful that you got to go there. I am truly envious today. Good for you! Keep showing us more, please!! That must have been such a wonderful, memorable day. Thanks for letting us come, too! Those still-life images are magnificent.

  13. soooo jealous you got to see Fantin-Latour...while I'm here packing pigments!!!!

  14. Carol, you did quite a few discoveries on this trip. The paper cuts are a fascinating craft. In central-northern europe, especially in Poland, it's a strong traditional craft.
    The street signs are also fascinating!

  15. looks like you are definitely maximizing your time and enjoying paris to the fullest extent of the law!!! i posted about paris' amazing hanging signs too, but i missed those beauties, where were they?

  16. Anonymous1:48 PM

    I really enjoy your posts et J'adore Paris! I was supposed to go this month, but the weakness of the dollar kept me home. I just returned from Montreal instead, as I can drive there in less than 6 hours. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us all, it makes me feel like I'm there.
    merci beaucoup,

  17. Too much fuss is made over the dollar LUIS
    Everything is cyclical..sometimes it's up and sometimes it's down
    But Paris is always Paris! :)

    MERISI Taking a wrong turn or just taking a chance when you're traveling is always the RIGHT thing to do :)

    GIGI I thought I would have to walk home from the Gare de Lyon last night since we got in AFTER the greve began at 8PM, but no problem. The trains were running like normal. I was darn lucky!

    TANKS LOVEITALY There's always a bit of fear of overcome striking off on a focused adventure. You must do it everyday in your work! the fun part about going alone is you don't have to ask permission. you do have to ask directions sometimes and I learned I need not buy a pain au chocolat just to ask which way is the train station?

    PETER I too have loved Fantin-Latour from afar, except for a few rare occasions at an auction house. The chance to see 130 works was not to be missed!

    Tongue in Cheek hopping on the train to Marseille got me in the mood for more hopping, so it was easy to head off to Switzerland. I was invisioning more hopping but I decided I better let my paintbrush do some hopping for a change!

  18. LOL @ being threatened with Swiss army knives and watches.Phew! Glad you escaped that dire fate.

  19. someday i would like to have the nerve to copy a painting in the louvre...blessings, rebecca

  20. I lived in Lausanne for a year, as a child, such a lovely city! How wonderful to go for an exhibit!!! Dreamy!!!

  21. How stange is this? I am working on a table right at this moment which is called Still Life and is based on still life paintings from the late 19th Century.
    Now on the subject of Switzerland - their border guards are SCARY!!!and they slap a funny sticker on your windscreen when you go through. I have no idea what it's for but it looks scary and they tell you not to remove it until you leave the country. Other than that it is one of the most beautiful countries in the world and they have great banks. Keep enjoying your trip.

  22. Ooooh - I LOVE the Swiss paper cutouts! Thanks for taking a photo of those; I could study those delicate silhouette cutouts for a long time. Such purity of line and black/white contrast fascinates me no end.

    Glad you are having a good visit and that you are taking photos and sharing - thank you, thank you.

  23. Anonymous10:30 PM

    This is what I love about travelling alone, one gets to run loose and discover things like that little cafe.

  24. Anonymous12:43 PM


    Whew...I am glad that I missed the strike! Bet those Velib bikes are getting a workout, now! I have not been to the Pompideau, but what wonderful views there are from there!! And you are line at L'as..something must be up!!! Have fun:)

  25. Thank you for introducing me to Henri Fantin-Latour. Beautiful still lifes! Your blog is as cool as ever, I love all this recent paris stuff.


  26. Anonymous5:24 PM

    When I got your email, I checked your blog for the comment I left yesterday--it had vanished! So, I will try to recall the gist and comment again:

    I was delighted to find a new Paris Breakfast post when I returned home after a trying day at work (grumbling contractors, designing an ICU on a budget, impatient clients). I swooned over the ease with which you could roll off to see the Fantin Latour show, ambled with you down the beautiful path through the park, delighted in your fortuitous restaurant find (my-son-the-vegetarian no longer wears leather!) and was thoroughly enjoying the adorable signs when the green RABBIT sent my blood pressure soaring. However, I am committing to the yogic way, and after a few cleansing breaths, I was able to see the sign for what it is: A symbol of the correct approach to rabbits: as Lapin! You are truly in a place of deep and lasting CULTURE! A shame you had already dined....
    Oh, yes, thank you for the plug!

  27. Love your posts & your work! Fantin-Latour is a favorite of mine also, so I really enjoyed this one!

  28. Fantin-Latour is absolutely amazing! I'm glad you had the chance to visit and I hope that you come back soon :D There are so many great places in the world to travel and you seem like such a fun person that just wants to get out there and experience life. Good luck in your travels!


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