Saturday, October 13, 2012

damp paree

It was very wet in Paris this afternoon (and of course one can't think of umbrellas here without thinking of Caillebotte).  I walked through the umbrella-filled Tuileries to the Hopper exhibition, and stood in a very slow line for about ten minutes, at which point I reached a sign saying that the waiting time for admission from that point was about 3.30 hours.  Moral: buy ticket for a just-opening exhibition in advance.  So I went over to the Petit Palais (built for the Universal Exhibition in 1900, and therefore has some wonderful fin de siecle ironwork) to see an exhibition about the photographers in the circle of Gustave Le Gray, who were active between 1850-60, and very, very interested in the formal aspects of composition (and there were some amazing portraits, too, by Adrien Tournachon, Nadar's brother - of a mime, of Gustave Dore, of strange instruments for measuring the expression on the human face).  Coming away from it, the clouds had temporarily cleared; dead umbrellas littered the ground;

and the Eiffel Tower was everything that one could wish for ...

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