Thursday, December 29, 2011


I have an assignment to draw Sempe-like figures running. I wish they were all running dogs instead... Last October I visited the new Sempe exposition the day it opened at Hotel de Ville...
The drawings are displayed in a casual, accessible manner...

Making it easy to get up close and personal with each drawing...
Jean-Jacques Sempé could be considered the iconic artist of Paris.

His prolific, witty drawings capture that Parisien j'ai ne sait quoi.

It's nice to see Sempe's daily sketchbooks.

Plus his final drawings readied for the printer...

If you need to draw a bicycle there's no better artist to reference.

With Sempe's mastery of the quotidien urban life, be it Paris or New York, no wonder The New Yorker has made him a frequent cover artist...

Crowd scenes are right up Sempe's allee...

As are cats.
Perhaps rather than dogs?

When you step outside into Paris' streets, they come alive with Sempe images.
L'exposition Sempe is on at Hotel de Ville until 11 February 2012, if you can't make it
then watch this video and Enjoy!


  1. Looks just like my cat Jack.

  2. I just love your blog because you show and talk about things that I didn't know. Love when you educate us on art things as well as other things and the mix of words and pictures pretty much covers all styles of learning. Please keep it up!

  3. you will be as famous as he is someday, i feel it... love your drawings!
    also love the adventures of bear, they always make my day...
    happy and wonderful new year to you both...
    regards, carol ann

  4. THANKS Carol Ann!

    I wonder if I can include Bear in my drawing assignment...
    what a good idea :)

  5. LOVE Sempe!!!

    and your drawing is super too!


  6. What a nice post on the Sempé exhibit! I've been wanting to catch this. I think I may tomorrow while my husband and the kids try out skating at the Hôtel de Ville. My knees aren't up to it... And I would much rather check out this illustrator's work I have admired for a long, long time.

    Thanks, Carol! :)

  7. Sempé, how exciting!
    Are we going to see some of your drawings?

  8. Adorbs! both sempe et toi

  9. I hate to say it, but I have never heard of Sempe. I am so glad I visit here regularly as I am learning of so many new and fun things. Thanks for keeping us educated on the fine arts.

  10. CRIS,
    you may not have heard of Sempe, but I'll bet you've seen his work.
    He's done tons of covers for The New Yorker for years and years.

  11. Lucinda12:34 PM

    it's never too late to start loving SEMPE!!

  12. Hi Carol,

    When we visited Paris in the autumn we walked by the Hotel de Ville and saw and commented on the nice posters for the Sempé exposition. Unfortunately we didn't know his name and didn't understand what it was about then so we never went to see it.
    I really enjoy learning new things about Paris through your blog:) Thanks!
    ~ Marie

  13. Anonymous1:15 PM

    Thanks for the video on the Sempé exhibit. I just love him, and have 2 collections of his work on my coffee table. I never tire of his whimsy, and always see new things in his drawings.


  14. Oh I probably have seen Sempe's work
    Just not put the name to it.
    What I love about blogging is how its opened up a whole world of
    things one never pays attention to until its blogged about.
    You got me into blogging.
    You got me interested in Paris.
    and many many other fun things...

    Thanks for all the years of fun reading. :))

  15. Wow, Carol--love your drawings! Sempe is an all-time fave of mine. LOVE his stuff!

  16. Very enjoyable drawings - I could look at his work all day!

  17. When the NYorker arrives with one of his covers, I'm always delighted. And love the cats....happy assignment. thanks for the links, too.

  18. Anonymous9:09 PM

    How funny1 From the very first picture, I thought he was the Parisian equivalent of the New Yorker. Then you showed me that he IS the Parisian New Yorker!

  19. I love your little running dogs. Tres mignon. And since there's no chance I will be in Paris any time soon, and since those Sempe New Yorker covers don't come fast enough, thank you for my visit to the expostion.

  20. wonderful, wonderful. Would so love to see this exhibit. Thank you for sharing.

  21. Thank you so much for the introduction to this artist! I had never heard of him before (shocking, I know, for this Francophile...)

    May I share this video with you (if you haven't seen this before, it's of an interactive window display for Repetto on Rue de la Paix):


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