05 July, 2008

I researched and found out about the Quartier Saint Germain, a neighborhood with a lot of art galleries. Ever since my painting Professor at Princeton, Julia Jacquette, took us to see galleries in Chelsea in New York, I love looking at contemporary art in small display spaces. I can really do justice to the artwork, and I can relate to it better because it’s very current. In large museums you rush from gallery to gallery and it all becomes a blur. So today it’s either those galleries, or the Musée du Louvre, a safer tourist destination (but still extremely important).

Suddenly seventeen days seems too short a time to be in this city. I am traveling around and am working on photographs, drawings, and paintings at the same time. That makes it challenging to allocate time, but it also makes it more interesting, because it gives me an opportunity to pause, reflect, and explore in depth the subject I wish to tackle. Yesterday, therefore, was supposed to be a studio day. I converted my room into an art space by moving all furniture to the sides, clearing up a large wall and leaving empty a big central space on the wooden floor. I also went for more groceries and lunch, and by the time I got back I was psyched. I worked all afternoon and have started a few works, but again nothing that I want to put up here just yet.

I wanted to get out and see more of the city, so in the evening I took a walk from the Saint-Germain-des-Près Metro station (a potential destination for today), down the Rue Bonaparte, along the Seine river, over the most festive bridge I’ve ever seen, and then on toward Rue de Rivoli. There I got ice cream and walked back because soon the Metro would shut down for the day. Along the way I took pictures, but I didn’t have a tripod stand so I had to use the side railing of the river as support. I think it would be a hassle to carry around a tripod stand – maybe I should next time…

Paris is a very merry city. It is not shadowed by skyscrapers, and though life seems fast-paced in the Metro, as people rush in and out, outside, especially where I walked yesterday, everything is calm and indulgent. There is a lot for one to do and see and the city seems to welcome you warmly. My one advice would be to not go to Paris alone! I was rescued by my artwork yesterday, and the fact that I have an endless list of things to do, but I definitely think that coming here with a friend or two would be a blast (though I suppose not as productive if you're painting too!).

Today I might meet up with Stèphanie, who I worked with in New York a year ago. She wants to go to a jazz bar with her friends and take me along. I am interested to see what that is like! I don’t know if the logistics will work out because I don’t have a phone and she is busy with work, but I have my fingers crossed.

Andy, here's a picture I took of the subway two days ago. I don't really want to photograph people because I think that might be rude. Plus, I would look like a tourist, which I so am not!

I just found out that the Louvre is free on the first Sunday of the month - tomorrow. So today I'm off... somewhere else, probably the boat ride or the art galleries.

1 comment:

Angela said...

It sounds like you're having a lot of fun. Yes, perhaps having a friend or two would be quite counterproductive to your painting task. :)