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Posts Tagged ‘Sm’art’

deco5May in Aix.  Que de bonheur!  And I hope you have bought your little posy of muguet to ensure future happiness.

There is certainly plenty to do in the coming days to make culture-vultures happy.

We can start with Sm’art which is a large open-air show of contemporary arts – 200 painters, photographers and sculptors will be exhibiting in the Parc Jourdan from 2nd – 6th May.

You have to pay to go in but it is worth it if you like really funky art.  It must be a treasure trove for collectors, but for those of us who like painting, it provides lots of inspiration.  They also have a nice café for tea on the lawn.  Details: http://www.salonsmart-aix.com/fr_FR/

More conventional art is on show at the Fondation Monticelli where their new expo starts May 1st.  Entitled ‘Cassis, Marseille, L’Estaque 1830-1930’ it sounds promising but no details on their website.  Why oh why don’t these organisations let us into their secrets?  Anyway, it’s a fabulous place to visit.view from gallery  Just look at the views from the windows!  The gallery is in a converted fort perched on rocks high above L’Estaque.  There is a huge free car park.  No café but it’s easy to roll on down the hill into the town for a coffee.

Friday you have a choice between two fascinating events.

In Aix, there is an all-night reading of the entire Odyssey in the place de l’Hotel de Ville. There will be a relay team of readers accompanied by dancers and musicians.  From 18:00 to 05:00 the next morning.  In front of the Hotel des Grains whose bibliotheque will be open throughout.  More info on www.odyssee2013aixenprovence.blogspot.fr.

Cie Carabosse / Installations de feu / Fesival DŽpayz'arts / Fontainebleau 31/12/2009Alternatively you can head down to Marseille for a what sounds like a magical evening ‘Le Vieux Port Entre Flammes et Flots’ when the Vieux Port will be illuminated with 6000 torches, lights and candles in different formations.  Apparently you can walk literally right round the Vieux Port as the right and left banks will be joined by a floating illuminated jetty!  Friday and Saturday from 20.30 onwards.  They advise everyone to use public transport.  Details here:

http://www.mp2013.fr/evenements/2013/05/le-vieux-port-entre-flammes-et-flots/?utm_source=MP2013+FR&utm_campaign=b576c560f0-Newsletter_6_4_26_2013&utm_medium=email

And finally – markets on Sunday. There’s antiques and brocante in the place de Verdun,  jewellery in the cours Mirabeau (Les Bijoux d’Aix) and old books in the place de l’Hotel de Ville.

Lots to do and enjoy!

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A quick report from Sm’art which is on today, tomorrow (Sunday) and Monday.  It’s a gathering of 190 artists and 16 galleries in the Parc Jourdan.  The works are incredibly varied – lots of abstract paintings and some bright, fun sculptures.

The marquees spread around the park, under the trees, making it a very pleasant place to visit.  There is a snack counter but also, this being France, a well-organised restaurant offering a three-course lunch.

Open today until 20:hrs, Sunday 10-20:00hrs, Monday 10-18:00hrs.

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There are posters all over town for Le Salon Sm’art which starts on Thursday in the parc Jourdan. This is a very large gathering of 170 artists – painters, sculptors, photographers, designers and gallery owners – which began back in 2006. It was previously held in the grounds of a château near Pont de l’Arc which was fine until one year it poured and we visitors had to contend with an awful lot of mud to see the exhibits. So it’s good news for the 14000+ expected visitors that it’s now in town. With so many exhibitors, you are bound to find something interesting – they usually have some very challenging and stimulating artists involved. You can see some examples on www.salonsmart-aix.com which has an English translation (good) but why on earth (and here comes an Aixcentric hobby-horse) don’t they get one of the many expats around town to run an eye over their English? They are promising “the desire to create, the fun to seduce”…my goodness. It’s on from 3rd-7th May.

Elsewhere on Thursday is a one-day conference on the subject of France’s highly controversial bad-boy novelist Michel Houellebecq who will be making an appearance. I recently read his Goncourt-Prize-winning novel ‘The Map and the Territory’ which I found to be fascinating, challenging and thought-provoking, unlike ‘Atomised’ which was misogynistic and unpleasant. The conference features various academics talking on aspects of his work – in French. From 18:00 there will be readings from his work by actors in the presence of Houellebecq. At the Cité des Livre: http://www.citedulivre-aix.com. The conference is organised by www.univ-amu.fr, contact absa.ndiaye@univ-amu.fr.

Finally, a pleasant place for a light lunch, just a few paces from the cours Mirabeau.  A group of us tried ‘Basilic & Citronnelle’ which is a small restaurant at 5 rue de l’Opéra.

They offer a plat du jour, various quiches and also an assiette végétarienne (pictured right).  They have home-made pâtisseries for afters and with coffee, the bill came to just under 20€ each.  It’s open every day except Sunday, lunchtimes only.  04 42 27 58 77.

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