Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

There’s free entry for four people in 250 arts centres across France this coming weekend, provided you are armed with a voucher from Télerama magazine.

I mentioned in the last post that the interesting Musée Bonnard is involved.  You can also visit MuCEM, or the Musée Réattu and the Musée de la Camargue over in Arles.  Nothing in Aix though…..

Here is a link to see what else is available in our region: http://www.telerama.fr/scenes/week-end-musees/region.php?region=Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur

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Pierre Bonnard loved his home at Le Cannet – he painted his wife Marthe in the bath, the cats in the dining room, the splendid colours of his garden and naturally his view of the sparkling Mediterranean.  Le Cannet now has the world’s only museum dedicated to the artist, and since its inception, it has been reaching out to the public creatively and pro-actively.  Admirable in fact.

The current exhibition, ‘Bonnard en tout intimité’, runs until 23rd April and has a host of spin-off activities.

  • One hour guided tours for adults.  Entry +3€
  • Opportunities for 5-12 year-olds to see the exhibition and then try out different techniques in a workshop + 5€
  • Family visits, 12 and 19 April – lots of stories and anecdotes to inspire youngsters 8+
  • Weekend 18-19 March free entry for 4 with a voucher from Télérama (this is part of the Weekend Musees Télérama)
  • Atelier 3 Generations – children 5+ with their parents and grandparents.  Visit exhibition then all can roll their sleeves up and create!.  April 13 and 20.  +5€.
  • Two dance events in the gallery – one illustrating the life of Marthe Bonnard his mysterious muse
  • Tie up with Festival des Jardins (see last post).  An expert will be on the museum terrace with lots of seeds, helping people plant their own miniature garden.  Free.  Hourly April 14.

As well as all this, the museum has a downloadable 45 minute guide to the gallery and also a free downloadable ‘balade’ so you can walk around the main sites relevant to the artist after your visit.

What a great museum – just what they all should be!

Too much detail to include in this short post so please have a look at their website for more. http://www.museebonnard.fr/

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Le Petit Palais. Credit: Directphoto collection/Alamy

Cafés in museums and galleries are often a good place for a rest and a restorative snack. (more…)

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picasso-talkThe director of the Musée Picasso at Antibes will be in town (more…)

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The beginning of March sees the opening of new shows in Arles and also over at the Carrieres de Lumieres at Les Baux.

van_gogh_kastanie1-290x160Starting with the Fondation Van Gogh, it is a pleasure to see that they will  have 8 of his paintings on show, starting 4th March.  ‘Calm and Exultation, Van Gogh in the Buhrle Collection’ claims to show the stylistic development of the artist’s work, including the ‘lightening and brightening’ of his palette, and his synthesis of different influences.

Read more here: https://www.fondation-vincentvangogh-arles.org/en/expositions/calm-and-exaltation-van-gogh-in-the-buhrle-collection/

Alongside this, is a show of the work of Alice Neel, new to me, but soundsaliceneel-web-290x160 interesting.

This is what they say: ‘Known for her psychologically charged portraits as well as still lifes, cityscapes and landscapes, Alice Neel (1900-1984) bore witness to a century of change. As a Communist affiliate she engaged with her neighbourhood communities in Greenwich Village, Spanish Harlem and finally the Upper West Side, taking a strong interest in the victims of poverty and discrimination, whether they were African-American, Puerto Rican, political activists, homosexuals or transvestites. In the feminist era her pregnant nudes and depictions of mothers and children broke with convention’.

The same day sees this new production –


It is ‘Bosch, Breughel, Arcimboldo, Fantastique et Merveilleux’ at the Carrieres de Lumieres which will be running until early January 2018.   Details: http://carrieres-lumieres.com/fr/bosch-brueghel-arcimboldo

And if you can’t get that far, remember the municipal museums in Aix are free on Sunday 5th (being the first Sunday of the month) and that includes the Musée Granet.

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Three local artists are exhibiting throughout the coming week in the beautifullyimg_2680 restored chateau at Bouc Bel Air.  People thronged the vernissage last evening to see their work.

Fi Katzler produces local landscapes, painted energetically, with bold strokes and vibrant colour.

American O’Neill Cushman has been in Aix for several years and favours a more subdued palette to produced nuanced landscapes and still lifes.

Pretty little pots on sale for a good cause

Pretty little pots on sale for a good cause

Local Kelly Raynaud is a talented ceramicist and it was a good opportunity to admire her work….but also to buy some for a very good cause. ‘La Ribambelle’ cares for children from Madagascar who need to come to La Timone hospital in Marseille for cardiac surgery as there are no facilities for this on their island. The group find volunteer families to house the children before and after surgery, and at the moment, there are five families in Bouc Bel Air registered to do this.  (www.laribambelle.fr).  The pots, hand-made by Kelly, are just 15 or 20€ each and were flying off the shelves last night.  The seller assured me that they were restocking….

So, a chance to see the work of three very different artists, and support a very worthy cause.
Until 12th February. 
Mon, Tues, Fri = 14-17:00
Thurs = 10-13:00
Wed, Sat, Sun = 10-13, and 14-17:00.

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In 2007, John Maloof, a local historian in Chicago, came across some boxes  ofvivian_maier_vintage_prints_img_2910  photos and negatives depicting Chicago in the 60’s at an auction house. Unable to get a thorough look at their contents, he took a gamble and purchased the boxes for around $400.

He found nothing relevant for the history book he was writing so John put them to one side. After some time, he revisited the negatives and started to scan them. The images that caught his attention were historic in nature and he was intrigued as to the identity of the photographer.

She was Vivian Maier who had been a nanny in Chicago during the 50s and 60s.  In her spare time, she was out on the streets photographing people, buildings, signs, objects, unseen lives and landmark buildings long since demolished.  Her talent is clear but she was unknown in her lifetime.  She img_2595accumulated boxes of belongings as well as the photos and had to pay for storage – she had no home of her own.  When she defaulted on the payments, the contents were released to auction houses.  She died aged 83 in 2009, never knowing that she would become famous.

The documentary by John Maloof, ‘Finding Vivian Maier’ won awards and was Oscar nominated, and her pictures have been exhibited widely.  They can now been seen in l’Isle sur la Sorgue where the arts centre has a large display of photos and also a comfortable room where they are showing the documentary.


Vivian Maier captures her own reflection in a passing mirror

One room is dedicated to photos where Vivian caught her own image in unexpected ways.  Others show typical scenes of street-life usually featuring the ordinary people going about their daily lives.  It feels like another world.


Where:  Campredon Centre d’Art, 20 rue du Docteur Tallet, l’Isle sur la Sorgue.

When: until 19th Feb

Opening times: 10-12:30 and 14-17:30 Tues-Sun.

Logistics: just over an hour’s drive from Aix.  Large car-park just across the river from the arts centre.

Two warnings!   The Vivian Maier website appears to have been hacked.  Also this cold spell is not the ideal time to visit the town as the delightful cafés by the streams look like this….Hopefully there will soon be some warm weather to enjoy while visiting this very good exhibition.



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