King Tut’s guard, Egypt, Egypt, 1327 BC. “Egypt? Scotty? Can you check your orders please?”
“Oh. Paris, Captain? Ever so sorry. Which century, Sir?
“19th to 21st, Scotty.
Suzanne Valadon’s workshop, Montmartre, 21st century. Suzanne Valadon (1865-1938) was a model – to Puvis de Chavannes, Renoir, Toulouse-Lautrec – and painter. Her workshop and apartment has been very well preserved at the Musée Montmartre, Rue Corot. Note the jug and washbasin for “minor” washing.
“Major” bathing, by Suzanne Valadon, late 19th, early 20th century. In 1945, after WWII, half the lodgings in France had no running water… I wonder whether that sketch or the painting above are originals. They could well be. But there is no security whatsoever, not even a camera. Such a small sketch could easily be snatched. They might be copies as in Monet’s workshop in Giverny.
Travellers 10. “Scotty, back to Montmartre, please”. (Scotty has been a tad distracted since he came back from fishing in 17th century Scotland. Need to have a word with him. His Rrrr’s have also thickened.)
Elégantes in the streets of Montmartre, late 19th, early 20th century. (c)ourtesy Musée Montmartre. Mary Poppins lived nearby as an au-pair for a short while. “Scotty, up a notch to the 21st century, if you will.”
Montmartre, 21st century. “Thanks Scotty. Please hop to 19th century Netherlands.”
Dutch peasant woman. Vincent Van Gogh, 1885. Emil Bührle collection on loan at the Musée Maillol. I’ve already mentioned the darkness of Van Gogh’s earlier works. Compare to this later portrait of a young man:
Atelier des lumières, Paris, 21st century.
Traveller 11. Notre-Dame-des-champs.
Offrande, the offering. Gauguin, 1902. Emil Bührle collection at the Musée Maillol. A very rare Gauguin, privately held, and possibly one of his last works: he died in 1903, a year later, in the French Marquesas islands.
Travellers 12. The café I had lunch in was a fantastic time-space spot.
“Yes, Mr Spock?”
“Time for lunch break, Sir?”
“Absolutely, absolutely. Thank you Mr Spock for reminding me. Scotty, please beam me down at my usual Paris location. Spock will join me.”
Four kinds of cheese, including an indispensable Saint-Nectaire. Three kinds of paté. Radish. Salad (to the right of the picture). Baguette. Perfect combination. Spock downed half the bottle of Bourgogne-Passe-Tout-Grain. And I thought Vulcans didn’t drink.
Aunt Lucie, Maillol, 1892. Musée Maillol. I already mentioned that Maillol is better known for his sculpture. But his drawings and paintings are… faultless. This work has a ring of Norman Rockwell, does it not, Spock?
Dina Vierny and Maillol, c. 1935. Dina, a Russian émigrée, was 15 when she met Maillol for a modelling session. “I came for half an hour and I staid 15 years”, she later wrote. She was Maillol’s last model and muse. After Maillol died in 1944 at the age of 83, Dina dedicated the rest of her life to the memory and preservation of Maillol’s heritage. She opened an art gallery in 1945, got married, had children of her own, two of which now work at the Musée Maillol she fought for years to set up. The museum opened in 1995. Half a century after Maillol’s death. She died, age 90, in 2009.
Dina Vierny by Maillol.
“Scotty? Ready to warp?”
The 53 stations of the Tokaido. Utagawa Hiroshige. Musée Guimet, Paris. Hiroshige was born in Edo – now Tokyo – in 1797. Along with Hokusaï, he was one the masters of Japanese print-blocks. Commodore Perry “opened” Japan in 1853 by a show of force that changed Japan forever. Hiroshige died in 1858. So he probably saw a few of the consequences of the “opening” to the West. The print-blocks were later widely distributed in Europe and drastically modified the perspective of many European painters, from Monet, to Renoir, to Van Gogh to Gauguin et al. One can definitely say Western art would not be what it is without this Japanese influence.
Cour carrée du Louvre. I am sorry to say that all the outside statues at the Louvre are covered in dust. So much unemployment and they can’t pay someone minimum wage to dust the statues at least once a week? Sigh.
Female divinity, Angkor, Cambodia, c. 12th century AD. Musée Guimet, Paris. Compare to the French 17th-18th century version above. Two styles of representation.
Travellers 13. I have experimented lately with colour inversion. (Spock asked me “What for?”) Flea market, Porte de Vanves, 21st century AD.
Maillol’s Three Graces, garden of the Tuileries. Dina probably posed for one of the Graces, an old Greek motif. (Had to look it up): the Graces, Gratiae in Latin, Charites in Greek, were the goddesses of charm, beauty and creativity. Hmm. I like that combination. Would charm and beauty be the source of creativity?
Pont-Neuf in the afternoon. For best pictures of the bridges and Notre-Dame, go in the afternoon. Best light by far.
The pyramid vortex at the Louvre.
The only Bouquiniste in Paris with a land line. Doesn’t have a cell. I asked him. Also asked for permission to take the photo. Do. Not. Take. Pictures. Of the boxes or images without permission. They get very annoyed. (They sell the stuff). Note the titles to the right: William Shirer’s Third reich, the Manifesto of the Communist Party by Marx and Engels.
This land line is also very useful for Spock as a reference point to fine tune the ship’s location in Paris.
Captain and crew wish to thank you for flying Equinoxio’s Time-Space shuttle. A longer flight than usual…
Oh? Excuse me, the phone is ringing. Gotta go.