Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Creating the September Paris Letter - Poilane


The monthly Paris Letter art begins with a 3” x 5” idea doodle, usually drawn on the bus or Metro.
I had an old 20’s boulangerie paper scrap cutout. 

I imagined I could create a cut-out stand-up French bakery.Ha!Dream on.

Many ‘punition’/punishment cookies (Poilâne’s signature sand cookie) were eaten to get in the mood.
For research I visited 
Poilâne on rue du Cherche Midi.  
My 1st Paris Map was on this charming street. Have you been?
Tufts of hair hit the floor fast as I looked for my engineer’s hat.
visiting Poilâne is a cosy, warm experience - the smell of sourdough bread and cookies baking.  
While deleting photos I found this French family
                                   Something clicked.
No need to wrack my brain creating a cut-and-paste paper invention...
That was before I got out my scissors✂️
The Breakfast Club pigeons are taking baths in plain view. 🙏 Pray for beautiful Napa Valley ❤️

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Man Ray et la mode - Musee Luxembourg

Another new, exciting photography show in Paris at musee Luxembourg.  Man Ray, (an American artist moved to Paris in 1921). His photographic work is seen from a fashion perspective rather than as a Surrealist or Dadaist.
The museum proposes Ray fell into fashion photography by
 taking society portraits, placing them in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, whose editors noticed of his unusual techniques and hired him. But a little research tells another story.
The stunning, young American Vogue model, Lee Miller showed up on his doorstep uninvited and announced she wanted to be his assistent. Ray said he didn't use assistants
 and anyway he was leaving immediately for Biarritz on holiday . Lee Miller said she’d accompany him! They worked together for 3 years. Ray remained obsessed with her, even though Miller got fed up and moved out, they remained friends the rest of their lives. By accident in the dark room, they discovered the technique of ‘Solarization’. It was Miller who introduced him into fashion photography if you believe the many riveting videos on her life.
Paris designers like Jeanne Lanvin, Vionnet,
Paul PoiretSchiaparelli adored working with Ray and his unique photographic techniques.

The designer’s garments are interspersed through out the exhibit.
Plus short fashion films made by Ray, with accompanying 20’s music to get you in the mood.
This surreal photo was an ad for mascara! The museum’s gift shop offers mascara, lipsticks, nail polish along with Man Ray catalogs.
These women are so elegant. Its hard not to compare their stylish manner with women today.
But women today are no longer confined to being simply objects of beauty.
Today’s women have many more options with great thanks to Ruth Bader Ginsburgquite a stylish
 woman herself. (Start watching at 11:00 minutes). This week has been an immersion in RBG tributes. You too? The new September Paris letter💌 is in the post📮🤸🏾‍♀️Stay well and safe dear PBers❤️🐻💋

Saturday, September 19, 2020

French photographer Sarah Moon at MAM


Sarah Moon’s retrospective just opened at Musée d’Art Moderne de Paris on Thursday. It is astonishing. I always thought Sarah Moon was British. She is French (79), born in Vernon near Giverny. Her family escaped during the war to London. She became a top model and changed her name when she switched to photography.
Her dreamy campaigns for Biba and Cacherel are legendary. She shot campaigns for Chanel, Dior, Christian Lacroix, Comme des Garçons, Valentino. There is an inimitable elegance, a mystery to her work.
lking through the exhibit words came to me like:

Evocative, atmospheric, poignant, enigmatic,
                                  Fantasie, surreal, dolls,
                       Dreamlike, fairy tales, touching,
       Shape shape shape, fade in - fade out,  Bonnard, phantom, magical.   What words come to you?

                           This portrait of Sarah Moon is from a story in Russh.
“All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow” Leo Tolstoy ❤️🐻

Friday, September 18, 2020

Salon International du Livre Rare - Grand Palais


There is visible smog in Paris from the fires. Big Merci ❤️ to West Coasters who wrote and thanked me for mentioning the fires. I’ve met many in Paris. It’s nice to meet more. I hope things turnaround for you ASAP🙏

Last night was the preview of the Salon International du Livre (on thru Sunday and free entry). Its always a wonderful show full of surprises. You’ll find what you are looking for and much more. Attendees kept their distance and were masked.

What to wear? Something dust-proof and bookish.
Save the bookmarks I send out PBers. They could be worth a bundle someday!
Meet Cristalle Gonzalos, owner of Paris specialist bookshop, 
Librairie Sur Fil de Paris at the end of rue Saint Paul near the Seine. She carries all things Paris, speaks English and does mail order. Hooray.
I fell hard for this long illustrated panarama scroll of 19th century rue de Rivoli (25€)in her shop window. She sends these out also as a poster.

Its a constant source of inspiration on my studio wall.
Another scroll also at Cristelle’s booth.
Another favorite was the collection of Bouquinistes art in the association’s booth. 
Especially the kid trying to paint Notre Dame onsite..tell me about it.
Someone mentioned Concorde looked deserted. Not so. It is bustling as ever. Like toute Paris. I’m going to Craig Carlson’s new book celebration at Abbey Bookstore tonite. Full report to come. Paris sends ❤️🐻PS

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Waltzing around Concorde

Look, that maman is scolding her petite fille in the Tuileries gardens. Last Friday I went to Madeleine
for a new sim card. Then I walked over to Concorde for a browse. Its still feels like taking a trip witho
ut packing.

I popped into Angelina. They usually have good 💌 paper envelope stuffers. But Paris is paper-free these days. Can you catch Covid from a business or perfume card? :( 

A tray of stacked chocolate cups drew my eye.  I’ll come back when its chilly (its 80s-90s degrees). 

                                Checks are IN for Fall

                            More checks and shorts...

 Laduree's latest macaron boxes are by Tokiodoki 

      By Sergio Legno, an illustrator obsessed with kawaii.
             Inside their perfect pastries. I resisted.

I didn’t resist 
Mado de Paris. New to 252, rue de Rivoli since January. I stopped in for an iced citronade, lemon ice cream and a lemon zest madeleine. Toute Lemon 🍋 

Beautiful lemon tea tins. Perfectly iced madeleines.

A classic French couple flirting in a cafe. What’s not to love about Concorde? Reliably beautiful in any light. I’m off to see the 
Sarah Moon exhibit at MAM. Then swim 🏊‍♀️ Then see Le Salon International du Livre Rare at Grand Palais. Then work ✏️ on the September Paris letter
                 Pray🙏 for the West Coast ❤️ 🐻