The 37 Bridges of Paris

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Today’s challenge is “bridge”. A nice one indeed. There are 37 bridges in Paris. Bridges always make for nice pictures but they tend to be very difficult to capture. This is why I often opt for a Dutch Angle as in the above picture of the Pont Royal, a Regal bridge for sure, built by the inevitable Louis XIV, yet rebuilt many times (1850 for its current state). In fact, when visiting the bridges with a lecturer the other day, I was shocked to learn that almost all the bridges over the river Seine had been rebuilt, including Pont des Arts and Pont Neuf. The latter isn’t only the oldest Paris bridge, it’s in fact the newest. I cross this bridge very often as it’s on the way of Bus 68 which goes from my place in Denfert to my office in Trinité.

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At first I thought I’d have plenty of pictures to show but it took me a while to figure out which ones to choose. Here’s Pont au Change at night. As shown by the “N” insignia, the current version of this bridge was built by Napoleon III in the 1860s. There were quite a few versions of that bridge. It derived its name from the bureau de change which had set up shop on the old bridge (the bridge with the perfume shop in Süskind’s The Perfume” which collapsed in the river in 1616 and burnt to the ground in 1621).

Continue reading “The 37 Bridges of Paris”

A Bit Of Greenery

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Today’s challenge is “green”. That’s an easy subject in a country where it rains so much, even though today, the sun is shining bright. Above the Auteuil greenhouses. This palm tree doesn’t need much water though.  

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Gerberoy, West of the Paris region, on the fringe of Normandy, water is plentiful. How could the grass be greener?

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Gerberoy again. Ivy everywhere. 

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There’s nothing like complementary colours like these. Geberoy again.

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I shot the above picture in the Ariège four years to the day, while exiting the cave of Niaux, one of the world’s beauties in which one sees some of the earliest paintings ever made (dating from around 17,000 to 12,000 years ago i.e. the Magdalenian period). (picture on the right-hand side).

Obviously, I couldn’t take any pictures inside. And if I had they wouldn’t be worth anything so I wouldn’t want to show you. (The bison in the above picture was plundered from the jet-lag travel blog, whose authors had already taken it from somewhere else and this is why I didn’t pay too much attention).

Instead I pointed my camera at the view of the mountains beyond Tarascon sur Ariège. At the end of the cave was that hideous iron platform (on the lefthand side in the picture) but when I turned it into B&W I realised one only sees the perspective and the mountains and the snow which had fallen in the beginning of April. Searching for a new subject today, I chose to wind back to 2012 and tell you that story.

Trio challenge

Forget about the sad times (let’s do this for good and carry on). This week’s challenge is ‘trio‘. It didn’t take too long before I could select a few pictures with subjects which came in threes. Here is a selection.

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National library (Bibliothèque Nationale), ok! This one is just an introductory pic.

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Essaouira in Morocco. Where gulls often come in threes (I made that one up but not the picture)

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Tulips in Versailles

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Three friends on the Beach in Le Havre

Door to Door (Friday Photo Challenge)

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Doors come in different shapes and forms. They are passages. Even though, sometimes, as in this picture of a Catalonian door, they can be very small and crooked.

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They are sometimes adorned with details. In Denfert Rochereau, the emblem of which is the proud Lion of Belfort, what else would you want on your door knob?

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Their colours can be striking too, as in Normandy, and their names can be funny at times (“Bichette” means “little doe”)

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Very weird names indeed.

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In Senlis, the old medieval town, some of the doors are painted turquoise and you’d almost think you are in York or Skipton, not a stone’s throw from the French capital.

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Doors are sometimes open too. As in this secret passage to the secret bar “Le Perchoir” in Menilmontant. There are no signs for this bar, word of mouth – and an open door – does it all.

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Doors can sometimes be transparent and passers-by seen from the inside.

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Lastly, they can sometimes be very small, yet take you very high as this door to an early twentieth century lighthouse in Normandy.

 Many thanks to the Daily Post people for inspiring us.

 

Scale: Schütte’s Mann in Matsch

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As this week’s post challenge is about scale I chose this shot of a visitor at the Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris in front of Thomas Schütte’s 2009 “Mann in Matsch” (Man In Mud). My main question about that statue wasn’t about its meaning. I tried to figure out how they managed to fit it in such a room whereas all the entrances were so small no such statue would have been able to get through. I suppose Schütte must have assembled his statue puzzle-like and that they have re-assembled it in the gallery. 

Inspired by Weekly Photo Challenge:Scale

Models from the Lyon miniature museum

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The model and special effects museum in Lyon is a must see. I’m not too keen on the visual quality of special effects though and didn’t take any pictures (but I recommend you visit that part of the museum thoroughly, it’s very impressive: you can even see a robotised alien from the Ridley Scott film). The models are absolutely stunning. At first I believed they were using them for films but in fact they are mostly done for pleasure by passionate artists like Dan Ohlmann who is also the founder of the museum. Here are some of my shots of those models.

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Below are 4 shots from Alan Wolfson’s views of an imaginary 1950s NYC.

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