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Posts Tagged ‘Arles’

Long-time Aixcentric followers will have read about the development of the old SNCF railway sheds and shunting yards into LUMA Arles, a stylish arts centre, funded by Swiss industrialist and art-lover Maja Hoffman.

Hopefully the photo below will give you an idea of the scale of the ‘Parc des Ateliers’ site:  the large building with the blue-grey roof was a factory for making engines, and has been open for a couple of years for exhibitions.  Then there are various industrial buildings which were being converted when we visited, and past them (to the left of the photo), the new tower designed by US Architect Frank Gehry.   The whole 20-acre site will be a centre for studios, workshops, research, exhibitions, and link into the annual ‘Les Rencontres d’Arles’ photography show which takes over every square inch of space in the old town each summer (apart from this one of course).

Two bits of good news: it all opens from 27th June (daily 11-19hrs), and guided tours of the buildings will be available in English.

Here’s the website for more infohttps://www.luma-arles.org/luma/home.html ….plus details on their new exhibitions.  Expect to be challenged!

Photo below for a closer look at the new 56m tower: it is clad with 11,000 aluminium panels and the cylindrical base is apparently a reference to the town’s Roman amphitheatre.  The tour of the buildings should be fascinating!

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  1.  The newly-created arts and cultural centre , LUMA, based in the old railway sheds, has a handful of shows starting tomorrow.  Headlining them is Gilbert & George : THE GREAT EXHIBITION (1971-2016), an 80-work retrospective which will be taking place until 6th January. http://www.arles-agenda.fr/index.php?id=19685.  I also like the sound of ‘Une Histoire Avec Vincent’.  Young photographer Lily Gavin has been given access to the set of a new film ‘At Eternity’s Gate’, based on 8 weeks in the life of Van Gogh. Shot at Saint-Rémy by Julian Schnabel, her photos show the daily evolution of the story.
  2. The massive ‘Rencontres d’Arles’ photographic show enters its 49th year.  There are exhibitions all over town. The best starting point is the tourist office who will sell you a large map with details of every one of them – and go where your fancy takes you.
  3. Moisson en Provence, by Vincent Van Gogh

    SOLEIL CHAUD, SOLEIL TARDIF. LES MODERNES INDOMPTÉS (HOT SUN, LATE SUN. UNTAMED MODERNISM) can be seen at the Fondation Van Gogh until 28th October.  It includes work by Van Gogh, plus of course Picasso who is everywhere this summer, and, Adolphe Monticelli, Sigmar Polke, Giorgio De Chirico, Germaine Richier, Alexander Calder, Joan Mitchell, Etel Adnan, Sun Ra.

 

So much to see in Arles right now.  Lunch will of course be necessary.  We enjoyed the medieval ambiance at Le Jardin des Arts ( details here: https://aixcentric.com/2014/04/13/lunch-in-arles/ or you could try the restaurant who served a meal to Daniel Craig aka James Bond, and family, when he had been turned away elsewhere! – great story here: https://aixcentric.com/2018/01/07/when-james-bond-visited-provence/

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…..is my new book which is being launched this week. (more…)

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‘BACK TO THE FUTURE’ is the theme for the 49th Rencontres d’Arles photography exhibition.  ‘This year, you are invited to cross space and time with a breathtaking, celestial journey across the ages. Photography is often the best-placed medium for registering all the shocks that remind us the world is changing, sometimes right before our eyes’, they write.

It’s developed into one of the world’s largest photography shows, with exhibitions in every available space across town.  This year, it has sections such as ‘America Great Again!’ featuring various photographers including Raymond Depardon; then there is ‘Run Comrade, the Old World is Behind You’ to mark the anniversary of 1968.  Included in this is a show I saw in London – ‘The Train. RFK’s Last Journey’.  It features the small groups of people who lined the entire route of the train that took Robert Kennedy’s body to its final resting place in Washington and is a fascinating snapshot of life 50 years ago.

The programme is here: https://www.rencontres-arles.com/en/expositions.  Sorry don’t know why they always have upside-down images on their posters. 2 July to 23 September.

Also this summer  in Arles, British artists Gilbert and George are exhibiting at LUMA, the new arts campus.  (Post about LUMA here: https://aixcentric.com/2016/05/25/changes-to-arles-skyline/) Their exhibition entitled ‘The Great Exhibition, 1971-2016’ runs 2nd July – 6th January.

I like the sound of ‘Une Histoire avec Vincent’ which starts at LUMA on the same day.  Young photographer Lily Gavin was given daily access to filming of ‘A La Porte de l’Eternité’ by director Julian Schnabel.  It took place over 8 weeks around Arles so her pictures should be interesting.

So – 2nd July – trip to Arles sorted!

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Lots going on. Even if these events are not to your taste, it’s worth knowing about them so you can steer clear of traffic and crowds if need be!  We once set off for Arles and met police road-blocks – we hadn’t realised there was a feria taking place: not the best day for a peaceful walk around the old town!  Here are some events to enjoy or avoid as the mood takes you… (more…)

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As the snow whirls down today, it’s hard to imagine hiking, but surely spring weather is round the corner?  Let’s hope so for the ‘Semaine de la Randonnée en Provence’ which starts this weekend.

There are 80 hikes to join, free and open to all.  It’s an initiative by the Conseil Departmental des Bouches du Rhone, Provence Tourisme and local hiking groups: there are some lovely walks on offer right across the region.  Have a look at the list here: https://www.myprovence.fr/agenda-culturel/sport/provence/142072-semaine-de-la-randonnee-en-provence.  25th – 31st March.

If you can’t join these, their website offers Les 5 Plus Belles Balades de Printemps, with detailed maps and ideas of places to eat/visit, that you can do under your own steam.  These are:

Very useful info for future outings…

….as is the latest issue of ‘En Balade’ which focuses on ‘Escapades Avec Vue’.  Most hikes in Provence have amazing views so it must have been difficult to choose their ten recommendations which range from Crestet and Cadanet to Toulon and Trets.  The magazine also covers weekends, what to do/where to stay/where to eat etc. In this issue they visit Les Baux and the area around Montagne de Chabre and Sisteron for the seriously sporty.  Produced by La Provence, on sale at kiosks, a bargain at 2,80 euros.

HAPPY HIKING!

 

 

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Two amazing facts:

  • Van Gogh stayed in Arles, which he loved,  for just over a year (Feb 1888-March 1898) during which time he produced 200 paintings (many of his most famous), 100 drawings and 200 letters.
  • Arles does not own one single work byVan Gogh. 

So, the opening of the Fondation Vincent Van Gogh Arles  last week was (more…)

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IMG_5644There has certainly been a development boom locally this year. I’m not sure whether these innovations were a result of the Year of Culture or whether they would have happened anyway; but the focus on Marseille-Provence certainly proved a powerful (if sometimes belated) impetus to transforming parts of Marseille or renovating existing museums.

 They all have one thing in common – this time last year, none of us had experienced them. How quickly they have become familiar!

Here’s my Top Ten Highlights – and, to follow, some lowlights: (more…)

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GroupeFWhat exactly these ‘Révelations’ will be remains to be seen but we can expect a dazzling display of water and fireworks, words and music, sound and video – all played out from the terraces of the Grand Théatre de Provence from 18:00.  The publicity says it will be tres poétique and that we will witness une ephémere tour de Babel.

 

Groupe F, the Arles-based organisation who are putting on the show, have already carried out 5 Révélations so far for MP2013: Arles, Cassis Martigues, Port Saint-Louis and Marseille.  Ours here in Aix is the sixth and penultimate event and promises to be spectacular.

It will be ideal for families but, says the publicity, the concept of ‘family’ is irrelevant for this event as whatever our age, we will all have the eyes of children.  I do love the way French marketeers put things!

So, a revelation in store for us all and I for one can’t wait!

Details of the organisation on: www.groupef.com  Expect road-closures around les Allées Provencales 17:30-19:00. www.aixenprovence.fr.

 

 

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Final post on Arles…and a recommendation to visit this ancient abbey which is showing some very modern art until 3rd November.

Flamboyant designer Christian Lacroix, who was brought up in Arles and loves the whole area, was brought in to curate (more…)

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