Monday, September 10, 2018

Nancy - Art Nouveau

I visited NANCY in the Lorraine 6 years ago. Last Wednesday I showed Carolyn the golden ironwork gates of PLACE STANISLAUSin the center of town are spectacular.

We were lucky to have a beautiful sunny day.

Blue art nouveau ironwork is all over the city, sometimes used in the most mundane ways for cellar grills and trashcans. This building has a wonderful balcony hard to capture from street level.

A must visit in Nancy is the musee de l'Ecole de Nancy.

Trying to catch that special shade of dusty blue paint. I asked if there was a specific name for 'bleu de Nancy'. No one seemed to know. Not even Google has an answer. You won't see this in any other French city besides Nancy.

Nancy was a hotbed of decorative talent turn of the century. Particularly glassware by Daum, Gallé and Gerber. I wanted to see The Daum Collection (600 pieces) at the Beaux Arts museum but they were stored away because of a recent flood.

I'm definitely going back to Nancy. I think I've entered my 'glass' period.

I remembered having a terrific lunch last visit at Brasserie Excelsior and off we went.

The fish stand is just inside the front door. I made up my mind instantly.

My plateaux de fruits de mer. France has over 3,000 miles pf coastline. You can't go wrong ordering seafood, especially shellfish.

More glassware. A good way to kill time while you wait for your course is sketching the classic carafe d'eau or water jugs. They differ slightly in every French restaurant.

The Brasserie's tap water was perfection by the way.

This is a heritage building with all the original decor by Nancy's top artisans.. The food is excellent. We got there at midi /noon and watched every seat fill up with locals and tourists.

Dessert was waiting across the street at the old confectionary shop.

Maison Lefevre-Lemoine was founded in 1840. They are still making the same Lorraine specialties based on local bergamot and mirabelle flavors. And very nice chocolates too. Are you enticed? Nancy is a short 1 1/2 hour TGV ride from Paris to Gare Saint Léon placed in the town center. An easy and fascinating day trip.

Mirabelle plums are everywhere at this time of the year in Nancy. Hurry up! Thanks for reading Parisbreakfast. If you'd like to receive Parisbreakfast letters, maps and a carafe d'eau in your mailbox, look in my Etsy shop. I'm off tomorrow for more shellfish. This time in Rockland, Maine. Painting rocks and lobsters...I better go pack!


  1. It might be that the paint is "Bleu de Lectoure". Lectoure, in Gasconny, was the core of the woad-based pigment industry set up by Napoleon when they couldn't import indigo from India for army uniforms during the wars with Britain...

    1. THANK YOU Rachel!
      That is definitely the same color...adusty sky blue. There is no exact watercolor like that...
      We use to sell woad pigment at Kremers NY. Only thing is its not permanent being from a plant..
      Love it.

  2. Rain tomorrow in Maine, then a beautiful week of sun, blue skies and puffy clouds. Enjoy your lobster.

    1. thanks for he weather update!
      Must find Puffy clouds how-to book!

  3. Such beautiful style and presentation. I would have expected nothing less from the French

  4. Love that dusty blue & am always taught something by your perspective of the things you see. Have a marvelous time in Maine $ eat a lobster for me!

  5. That blue looks like what we call Toulouse blue. We spent a long time trying to match it for our shutters here in Houston, but not sure we succeeded.

  6. Estelle6:00 AM

    I love your postings, always interesting and exciting architecture, colours, and stories!

  7. Mary L6:02 AM

    whee!! Paris Breakfast is coming to Maine...please tell when & where?? xxx

    1. I made it to Rockland after 2 RER train,s 2 planes (Lufthansa) and 2 buses (Concord coach)
      Cant believe I'm here!!
      And no I did not manage to paint on any of the planes, trains or buses 😳

  8. Barry Lewis6:50 PM

    exquisite nancy photos. & your meal looked delish.

    nancy was a hotbed of art nouveau & the french 'frank lloyd wright' jean prouve came out of nancy & i believe continued 2 b based there even tho he was part of the 1930s Paris avant-garde design scene.
    what an interesting town. thanks so much for having us 'visit'.

  9. Sally V2:37 AM

    Beautiful photos...and that blue. I will paint my front door! Thanks.


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