Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Paris Under Water

I'm still enthralled with greys today after I learned that Paris was under water exactly 100 years ago at Vivianne of Liquid French's blog yesterday. This photo is from Historic Photos of Paris. Granted it can't be much fun crossing the street on wooden slats but aren't the images evocative. And poetic?
These post cards are from
a stunning collection on Flickr. Is it any wonder the Impressionists saw things differently then we do? It was different back then...
An image from an exhibit in Paris on the flood up january 8- March 28 Paris inondé 1910 - Galerie des bibliothèques
This sooty drawing of Georges Seurat...
And this rainy painting of Gustave Caillebotte, both seem reminiscent of the period, yet neither artist lived to see Paris under water in January, 1910.
Another way to...
Cross the boulevard again from Postaletrice's collection...
The whole fascinating story - history, anacdotes, pictures - is told in Jeffrey Jackson's book, Paris Under Water:How the City of Light Survived the Great Flood of 1910. You can read a few pages at Amazon...
I don't suppose they had any grey macarons back then, but how a pro pos...




Regarde this hand-cranked film from 1910...positively dreamy non? Best viewed full-screen.
Bonjour La crue de la Seine janvier 1910!

29 comments:

Mika in Paris said...

My great-grand mother knew that time well and I remember her telling me when she was 99 years..
She told about her appartment on rue de Buci !
It was Venice with rats !
A+C++++

Parisbreakfasts said...

The real Venice has plenty of rats As does New York NOW!
Rats R Us
!!!

Mika said...

yes but this during horrible time the rats were swiming very close to the people !
Grrr....
and they were hungry !

Cybee said...

Oooh...Venice with rats! That conjures up a whole new perspective of that situation! Yuk! Must have been a very difficult time but I do agree, these photos are fascinating! Might want to read that book!

Corine said...

Carol, you make everything seem so poetic, even flood. You view of life is beautiful. Love the film. Thanks again for sharing these images.

sue said...

LOVE those old photos--they're gorgeous, aren't they!? Thanks for sharing. Really beautiful, Carol!

StyleSpy said...

As usual, I'm mostly about the food: what flavor are those gray macarons, anyway?

Bobbi said...

Thanks so much for these photos and the film. What an encouraging, creative way for me to start my day. What is the fascination we have with B&W photos?

Giulia said...

Very nice, Carol, as was yesterday's post. Oh yes, people, Venice has rats. But it also has big chubby gatti who are pretty alert. Ahem. Sorry ratti.

Great links, BTW, C.

xo

Parisbreakfasts said...

Those greyish macarons are-
Lavender flavored!!

lindaraxa said...

What a great post. You can read more about the flood from the author of the book in www.parisunderwater.com

BonjourRomance said...

Bonjour Carol,
It must have been a terrible time indeed, and those rats... Really you have the ability to make even a flooded Paris appealing.
I'm an American expat living here in Paris and I've yet to try those lavender macarons, you've given me my assignment for the week.
Merci for all the work you put into this site, it is obvious it is a labour of love for you.
Bon week!

BonjourRomance said...

Bonjour Carol,
It must have been a terrible time indeed, and those rats... Really you have the ability to make even a flooded Paris appealing.
I'm an American expat living here in Paris and I've yet to try those lavender macarons, you've given me my assignment for the week.
Merci for all the work you put into this site, it is obvious it is a labour of love for you.
Bon week!

BonjourRomance said...

Bonjour Carol,
It must have been a terrible time indeed, and those rats... Really you have the ability to make even a flooded Paris appealing.
I'm an American expat living here in Paris and I've yet to try those lavender macarons, you've given me my assignment for the week.
Merci for all the work you put into this site, it is obvious it is a labour of love for you.
Bon week!

Parisbreakfasts said...

Merci B R,
It's called seeing the world through rose-colored glasses...

Nikon said...

Great vintage photos, Carol.
Paris looks beautiful even when it is flooded :)

William Ternay, Jr. said...

As a fellow artist I can't help
commenting re the subtle variety
of warm & cool grays in these
images.
Jeane Dobie, in her great book on water color,"Making Color Sing,"
talks about the many beautiful
"mouse" colors one can mix, with
compliments.
Nothing on "Rat" colors, though.
And certainly nothing complimentary.
Another creative post.
Bill

Jen said...

Carol,I would never have looked at a flood as something beautiful but this post put another face to something tragic. These post cards are gorgeous! I haven't watched the video yet but I'm about too. I love grey days. I don't want a flood, mind you, but those macaroons are divine!

Happy Wednesday,
Jen

Foodwalker said...

Don't think I like the look of gray macs. Yuck. C
an you imagine walking across those planks in the full dresses, petticoats and impossible shoes of the time?
Didn't know about this flood.
Was the Seine dammed after that?
xxxx

Theresa Cheek said...

You constantly keep topping yourself! I have never seen this footage....amazing! Thank you for continuing the "gris" theme.

Crystal said...

Wow I had no idea. I would have never thought that Paris could flood this badly. I am definitely go to read more on this event. Paris has been grey most of the times I have been there, even in the summertime. Although, there usually were some sunny days and their pastries are works of art.

Have a great week.

Jennifer said...

Bonjour! J'adore your blog...If you ever get to Chicago you should go to the Art Institute of Chicago...we went when my daughter lived in Wisconsin.

I have seen both the following in person!!!...also American Gothic...

Seurat, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte (huge) &

Gustave Caillebotte, Paris Street; Rainy Day

Also many Renoir and Monet...

Blogs are so inspiring taking us places when we are home on the couch...

Thanks all my fellow bloggers...you all inspire me!

Jennifer aka Gigi www.jerseyshorejournal.blogspot.com

jules @ The Diversion Project said...

Oh wow, what gorgeous images. I've never seen anything about this before.

thanks for sharing!

jules

Merisi said...

The bravura (even if born out of necessity) of the ladies walking those rickety thin planks is beyond imagination! It must have been horrible especially for merchants and apartment dwellers on the lower floors!

Regarding rats and cats in Venice:
A Venetian friend told me that Venice is suffering an increase in rat population. The fact that the good people who love cats only declawed and closed up in apartments had most of the stray Venetian cats (or all they could get their hands and vets on) sterilized, causing a rapid decline of the number of cats in the streets chasing rats. By Ratatouille, I should not continue ....

jeanette, mistress of longears said...

How fascinating! Love the old photos and the cartoon showing people being carried through the water. The Plaza (a shopping area in KC) suffered a similar floor about 30 years ago, and one of the stores, after restoration, has a plaque on the wall to mark the high water line...wonder if any such plaques exist in Paris?

Fågel Blå said...

Åh so many beutiful pictures...
I love them!
And i love your beutiful blog!
Kathrine!

Clare said...

This time 15 years ago we were in Paris for a long weekend. Belated wedding present - a trip on Eurostar which was then a novelty!

The Seine had nearly burst it's banks. No boats as they couldn't get under the bridges and the lower roads which run along the Seine (near the Hôtel de Ville) were under water. I've got some photos somewhere. If I can find them would you like to see a copy?

Kaitlyn S. C Hatch said...

Just stumbled across your blog whilst researching Jeff Koons.
It's quite delightful! I'm about to go to Paris (tomorrow) for the first time. I'm currently reading 'Walks in Hemingway's Paris' to get me in the mood. Your blog has contributed to my excitment.

www.faunawolfcreations.com

BJ Lantz said...

How fascinating. Thanks so much for sharing.