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The subject of the next exhibition at the Hotel Caumont which starts in October has been announced.  The clue is in the colour.

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Visitors to Aix have, since 1990, been able to follow in the footsteps of Cezanne courtesy of 3,500 markers in the pavements and footpaths, as he wended from home to studio to painting sites…and then to cafes in town after a long day at the easel.

Now the Tourist Office have launched an app, based on their brochure, ‘Sur Les Pas de Cézanne’.  ‘Experience Cézanne with your smartphone’, we are invited. Continue Reading »

Following this post last month: https://aixcentric.com/2022/07/03/three-reasons-to-visit-chateau-la-coste-this-summer/ here is even more news from this ever-expanding arts centre which is just a 20 minute drive from Aix.

Visitors to Chateau La Coste are greeted by a splendid Louise Bourgois spider

 

Guided Tours:  now taking place daily, at 10:00 and 18:00, in English and French.

Two More Shows: Twenty-four watercolours by British painter Idris Khan.  Previously unseen, they will be shown in the Richard Rogers Gallery: one wall will show a work for each month to illustrate the passing of the seasons.  And…

Scuptures, hangings and paintings by Annie Morris (above).  This is the first exhibition in the huge new space that has been created by Oscar Niemeyer.  The sculptures shown in the photo are called ‘stacks’, the artist’s ‘joyeux obsession’. Made from plaster and pigmented sand, they are colourful abstract figures that seem perfect for this new gallery.

Note: The centre is open 10 – 19:00.  The five temporary art exhibitions are open 12 – 18.00.

 

 

From Thursday 5 May to Sunday 9 October 2022

In 1892, Parisian artist Paul Signac arrived in Saint Tropez on his boat, Olympia.  He chanced upon the tiny port when he ran into bad weather and needed safe harbour.

It was to become his home for the next 26 years and his presence attracted fellow artists like Matisse, Manguin, Bonnard, Derain and Seurat.  A true artists’ colony developed and he wrote to his mother ‘There is enough material to work on for the rest of my days. Happiness is what I have just discovered’.

May 2022 was the 130th anniversary of the painter’s arrival and the Museum of Saint-Tropez, L’Annonciade’ has honoured his memory with the temporary exhibition ‘Signac et Saint-Tropez.’

The museum talks of his establishing ‘a real artistic breeding ground, a sort of laboratory of the avant-garde, thus conferring on Saint-Tropez an artistic fame first, then literary, cinematographic, festive, and then increasingly touristy with a jet-set varnish which has not, however, totally undermined the authenticity of the peninsula.’

Interestingly, he and his painter friends left such detailed impressions of the port and the architecture of the houses on the quay, that they were accurate guides for the reconstruction after the bombardment of the port in WW2.

The collection of local art-works was assembled in 1922 and found a home in 1955 in L’Annonciade, a 16th century chapel on the quayside. It is a delight to visit.

Alas the town’s popularity has resulted in really heavy traffic during the summer months with the road into the port often being nose-to-tail.  Best to wait til September when things quieten down, or get the boat over from Sainte Maxime, a lovely journey which ensures you arrive just like Paul Signac.

Extra!  Curator Séverine Berger (conservateur en chef du patrimoine) will be giving a guided tour on Monday evenings.

Details: Open 10-19:00 during the summer. Outside the holiday period, hours vary, for instance the museum closes for the whole of November, so it is safer to call first. Tel: 04 94 17 84 10 or try http://www.sainttropeztourisme.com.

A quick note on the Ronde d’Aix, an event that will delight cycling fans but could frustrate anyone planning to drive in centre-ville tomorrow, 31st July.

 

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Ten free piano recitals under the banner ‘Sur les Routes de Provence’ will take place during early August.

The departement of Bouches de Rhone, a partner of the International Piano Festival at La Roque d’Antheron, is enabling performers to take their music to different communities in the region: here’s the programme…

 

 

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There are lots of events, including open-air cinema at Mont Faron (3 August The Lion King and 10 August Star Wars), and the 20th Nuit des Pecheurs, a tasting of grilled fish and local food, with music for a party atmosphere by the sea (7 August).

But two stand-out events are: Continue Reading »

Martigues is a small historic town, on the Etang de Berre and dissected by canals which lead out to sea.  It was painted by local artists then ‘discovered’ by the Fauves who arrived with bright paints to capture the light of this pretty Mediterranean port.  We have very much enjoyed walks here as well as visits to the Musee Ziem which displays many of these local pictures and is free to visit.

The town has an active tourist office who are offering the following specials…

Sunset Cruises

From 1st August, these Monday evening cruises take visitors around the canals, informed and entertained by the captain, a native of the town.

Details: 44 passengers max and dependent on suitably good weather.

From 19:30 on 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 Aug,

12 euros pp, 3 and under free.

Camping Paradis

The popular TF1 show is filmed on a beach close to La Couronne, beautifully empty for most of the year except when the film crews arrive to recreate a typical French campsite with bustling reception chalet, beach bar and superette.  A tourist office guide leads the one-hour tour and divulges anecdotes and set secrets to delight fans of this warm-hearted show.

Details

At 09:30, Tuesdays, 2 – 30th Aug.

4 euros for adults, 3 euros for children

Full details and reservations: https://www.martigues-tourisme.com/evenements/culture

‘Lee Miller Photographe Professionelle’  focuses on one of the most intense and productive periods in the life of this intriguing (*) American photographer (1907–1977).

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which are run by the Aix Marseille Metropole.

Locally, this includes the Piscine Yves Blanc near the Torse, (pictured), and the Piscine Sainte-Victoire, a 10-minute drive away near Venelles.  This latter has a 50m outside pool with dazzling views of the mountain.  They are literally dazzling as the sun bounces off the surface of the water.  Cool customers sport swimming-sun-goggles, not something I knew existed…not generally needed in our UK pools!

Free until 15 August – Profitez!