Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

New York Follows Provence…

… by the opening of its very own immersive digital art centre, modelled on the success of the Carrieres des Lumieres at Les Baux de Provence. (more…)

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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. (more…)

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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.



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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.


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

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‘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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Flowerworks that’s the theme for 10 museums and galleries across Nice from now until autumn. (more…)

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‘Tout en Fraicheur’ which opens today in Aix’s charming Maison Dauphine Gallery brings together 5 local artists to celebrate the summer season in Provence.  Here’s a taste of what you can see.

Sainte Victoire au Ciel Jaune, Clothilde Philipon


Vue Sur Mer by Cécile Colombo


Sur les Etageres Impeccables by Perrine Rabouin


As well as paintings, there will be photography and ceramics.  All at Maison Dauphine,  rue du 4 Septembre, Aix.

Good to know:  above the gallery, there are seriously styish studio apartments for visitors to Aix.


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Each year, there’s an opportunity in Aix to push open the doors of some of the most elegant and private townhouses to visit their gardens. 

This coming weekend, 25-26 June, is the 16th edition of this celebration of Aix life.  Originator and organiser Andrea Ferreol has four gardens on her programme this year with 32 artists who will be displaying their work, or performing their music, or reading from literary works.  Throw in 2 masterclasses and dance perfromances from Ballet Preljocaj and you have plenty to inspire and entertain you.

These four gardens aren’t ones I’ve ever visited and think they may be new to the programme which is great for Aixcentric followers who visit each year.  They tend to be quite small, being town gardens, so you can discover and enjoy all four in one gulp!


Details and flyer here: https://www.aix-en-oeuvres.com/flaneries-2022/

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The summer show at the Musée Regards de Provence in Marseille is dedicated to two local painters, Antoine Ponchin (1872-1933) and Jos-Henri Ponchin (1897-1981), father and son in a family of 4 generations of artists.

I have written a book, ‘Art in the South of France’, to celebrate the work of some of these little-known Provencal painters and would have loved to be at the opening this week;  since I couldn’t be there, let’s take a virtual tour.  By the way, if you are new to these parts, make a trip to this gallery a priority as it’s special; interesting art, great building conversion, rooftop cafe overlooking docks and Mediterranean….

Jos-Henri PONCHIN, Marseille, Huile sur panneau 42 x 51 cm, Collection particulière


Antoine PONCHIN, Calanque de Carry le Rouet, Huile sur toile 73 x 92 cm, Collection particulière

Jos-Henri PONCHIN, Cabanon dans la calanque, Huile sur toile 49 x 65 cm, Collection particulière

Jos Henri PONCHIN, Villa Kérylos, Huile sur papier 32 x 41 cm, Collection particulière

Antoine PONCHIN Maison sur l’eau, Huile sur toile 120 x 98 cm, Collection Musée des Beaux-arts de Nîmes

Jos-Henri PONCHIN, Venise, Santa Maria de la Salute, Huile sur papier 41 x 33 cm, Collection particulière

The gallery is open 10-17:30, Tues – Sun.

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A Paul Cezanne retrospective, just opened in Chicago and then travelling to London, is the artist’s largest individual exhibition since the 1990s. The two venues are the Art Institute of Chicago (15 May-5 September) and Tate Modern (5 October-12 March 2023).

In Chicago, there will be 90 oil paintings, 40 watercolours and two sketchbooks, with a slightly smaller selection in London.

One loan, a rather special one, is Cezanne’s palette and box of watercolour paints which were bought four years ago from the artist’s great-grandson, Philippe Cezanne by the Musée Granet.  They were displayed at the time and were I thought delightfully messy.

The shows, and catalogue, will also illustrate the influence that Cezanne had on his contemporaries and 20th-century artists. One interesting example is his Still life with Fruit Dish (1879-80), on loan from New York’s MoMA. It was once owned by Paul Gauguin, who described it as “an exceptional pearl, the apple of my eye”.  Gauguin included the painting in the background of Woman in front of a Still life by Cezanne (1890). This pair of pictures by the two artists will be shown alongside each other in Chicago. Tate Modern has decided to present only works by Cezanne. But the artist’s Still life with Fruit Dish will be shown in London for the first time, along with 20 other Cezannes never previously exhibited in the UK.


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