Seen here on a market day (Thursdays and Sundays), you can buy almost anything from produce, seafood, bread, flowers, cheese, and other food items to household goods. However, on Saturdays, this sprawling area is transformed into a street market of "art and creation," an opportunity to explore, to buy, and to talk with the artists.
The street art and fine craft markets around the world allow a visitor (tourist?) to take home a sketch or a post-card sized painting for a reasonable amount. My collection ranges from Punta Arenas to Prague and many places in between. Each petit quelque chose provides a more permanent memory of a city/country than a souvenir stand could ever offer.
Looking across the end of the Square de l'Île de France the textures and colors are punctuated by the 5ème arrondissement's notable skyline. The Panthéon is the tallest building and Église Saint Étienne du Mont is to the left, an easy walk from Pont Saint Louis where this photo was taken.
Although the bright pink hydrangeas* were the focus of my photo, this charming restaurant set in a Medieval building has more history than can be imagined. Serving simple, classic French fare, Madame oversees all the food preparations. Devotees of this non-touristy restaurant swear by the French onion soup, Cassoulet Maison, Boeuf Bourguignon and Crème Brûlée.
Set on the quiet Île Saint Louis,
one can step back hundreds of years
into a building which has not changed by much
and enjoy traditional French comfort food ...
which has not changed at all.
Aux Anysetiers du Roy
61, rue Saint Louis en l'Île
*corrected - merci beaucoup Lance, Jane, and Alan!
Bucolic delights reign at Rosa Bonheur, a bar set in a former guinguette
in the heart of Parc des Buttes Chaumont. Its name loosely translates
as ‘pink happiness’ but refers in particular to 19th-century French
painter and sculptor ‘Rosa Bonheur’, famous for her depictions of
animals and her role in the early feminist movement (alongside George
Sand and Sarah Bernhardt).
Sunday evenings are packed. A group of us were there last May, enjoyed the music and the party. As we left in a driving rainstorm, the serious night party crowd was just arriving. The people in the queue did not seem the least daunted by the line or the rain. C'est Paris!
Along Boulevard Edgar Quinet there is an open produce
market in the central alley of the boulevard every Wednesday and
Saturday morning (7am-2:30pm) and an arts fair every Sunday (10am until
sunset). On this spring Sunday an artist was displaying a colorful assortment of hats. Other vendors offered watercolors, collage, handcrafted leather, pottery, and other art and fine craft.
Fondation Cartier inhabits a striking clear glass building designed by Pritzker Prize architect Jean Nouvel surrounded by a modern woodland garden landscaped by Lothar Baumgarten. Would you believe that the landscaper's name translates to "tree garden?"
Seen from across Boulevard Raspail, it is difficult to discern the trees from the building with a multitude of green reflections.
Fondation Cartier is one of Europe's most important institutions for contemporary arts. It hosts a constant stream of temporary exhibitions focusing on particular contemporary artists, schools, or themes. It is also an important patron to contemporary artists,
commissioning important works and offering artist-in-residence programs.
Taken from the Pont Saint-Michel you can see layers from the buildings along the quai, the bouquinistes, the level under the street, the banks of the Seine, and finally the Seine herself.
How have I not noticed the walkway under the street level on this south side of the river? What are those open spaces in the stone wall, and what lies beyond? I am thinking of Jean-Valjean and M. Hugo.
The first day of the month is Theme Day for the City Daily Photo community, and the theme for April is "triangles." In Paris there are two obvious and very large architectural structures which would pass the test: La Tour Eiffel and I M Pei's Pyramide du Louvre, seen here.
Taken in spring at dusk with the last glow of daylight, it takes on the watercolor hues of l'heure bleue. The "blue hour" is a magical time of day when the softness of the fading light of day creates the colors only seen in artists' palettes and then dances across the Pyramide.
In the United States it is April Fools Day and we play pranks like, "Look out! There's a spider on your shoulder!"
tradition in France includes poisson d'avril, attempting to attach a
paper fish to the victim's back without being noticed. There is an
interesting history of this holiday of foolishness, and it originated in
France in the 16th century. You can read about it here.
in France, people who are fooled on April 1 are called poisson d'avril,
which literally means the "April Fish," because a young naive fish is
So, are you going to play a little prank tomorrow?