June 8- Paris Museums 1: Grand Palais and Palais de Tokyo

Dear June

Sunday was a Museum day: my friend T arrived from Switzerland with a big list of art exhibitions that were a must to him: among them, the Grand Palais and the Palais de Tokyo. Two of the museums that host contemporary art exhibitions. He hardly left his suitcase, and we started running around the city.

I am usually lazy on Sundays. I like to take things easy. But there was no time to lose.

We started with Bill Viola, the video artist, at the Grand Palais: it was very impressive, the first time actually I was acquainted with his work: conceptual videos on life, death and transfiguration, that were like moving paintings. My friend was also interested in the second Grand Palais exhibition: the photographs of  Robert Mapplethorpe.

Next stop: Palais de Tokyo. We were to join other friends, there, and his colleague who was in Paris. To begin with, “Flamme Eternelle”, or Eternal Flame, by Thomas Hirschhorn who lives and works in Paris. Inspired also by contemporary political philosophers, he creates a space that is free and open to the public. So different from the other exhibition of the photograph Sugimoto.

This intensive visitation is not at all my style. I’d rather be slow with a work of art, a person, and a situation. And choose one at a time. I’d rather take all my time. That makes also a choice more important.

I left them with Sugimoto and went to the museum café. There is a beautiful terrace outside, between the Palais de Tokyo and the Musée d’Art Modern that overlooks the river, la Seine. There were some adolescents with their skates, occupying part of the museum terrace. Tourists taking photos: families, couples, friends, all ages, different origins. The light was beautiful, and the “bateau-mouches” were passing by. Another form of “contemporary art”, an installation were I was participating myself.

 

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2 thoughts on “June 8- Paris Museums 1: Grand Palais and Palais de Tokyo

  1. Again, I loved this. I live vicariously through your words. Like you, I prefer going slow when experiencing things, rather than following a set agenda. But we each have our own styles and it sounds like a wonderful day.

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