I really enjoy visiting exhibitions that make me think, research and learn, but during the busy periods of life those can be quite overwhelming and you just crave for something aesthetically beautiful. Just like a Barbara Hepworth exhibition at Musée Rodin. It is a perfectly small, but well curated collection of her most important pieces to describe her life and works. Or I guess at least, to be honest I didn’t really study why those exact pieces were chosen, I only let my eyes wonder in the beautiful sculptures and emptied my mind. Maybe I’ll go back later with more curiosity, but for the moment it was exactly what I needed.
FIAC is always one of the highlights of my year. I love discovering all my favorite galleries from around the world, all gathered in Grand Palais for a weekend showing their best art pieces. During the event there are also many pieces exhibited around Paris with the concept of #FIAChorslesmurs – FIAC outside the walls – for which the selection this year was particularly great! Unfortunately I didn’t manage to see Yayoi Kusama’s Pumpkin at Place Vendôme as it had to be taken down due to strong wind, however I was extremely excited to visit Jean Prouvé’s demountable houses at Place de la Concorde exhibited by Galerie Patrick Seguin and Galerie Downtown, with all the gorgeous furniture of course.
Not only that autumn is my favorite season weather wise, but also every September takes place my most anticipated weekend of the year; the European Heritage Days (Les Journées du Patrimoine). During these two- or three days most of the monuments, government buildings and cultural sites, even the ones that are usually closed for public, open their doors for free visits.
This time I went to visit the Préfecture des Hauts-de-Seine in Nanterre, which sounds nothing but boring for anyone who lives in Paris. But what an overly 70’s, gorgeous design- and art heaven it was behind closed doors. I especially loved the LC1 chairs by Le Corbusier and Charlotte Perriand, which were everywhere down the halls and conference rooms.
Alaïa Haute Couture SS2003
Givenchy Haute Couture SS2001 by Alexander McQueen
Once again Palais Galliera succeeded to put together a great exhibition, this time in collaboration with Musée Bourdelle. The expo is called Back Side – Fashion from Behind, and Alexandre Samson‘s curation of the fashion pieces mixed with Antoine Bourdelle’s sculptures is just phenomenal. It’s also such an important subject in the era where we are consuming fashion mainly through a flat, 2-dimensional screen and shot from the front. The exhibition is running until 17th of November.
Summer is approaching and I’ll be spending most of it in the city, which I’m quite excited about. Although, we are doing a longer road trip to the Balkans in the end of the summer but that’s another story, I’ll still have two whole months to enjoy Paris before that.
I completed my wardrobe last summer with some great pieces and I can’t wait to wear them (ald also my mom’s old sandals) while wandering around in vintage markets and museums. I swear on white linen and silk during warmer days, as I need to cover my skin completely from the sun.
I have a bit mixed feelings about outlets, you can definitely find really good deals from them but on the same time, people tend to buy things that they don’t really need just because of the lower price tag.
However, recently I paid a quick visit to La Vallée Village, an outlet mall a bit outside of Paris, in the hope that they would still have Phoebe Philo’s designs at the Céline boutique. And I was right! As they operate 2-3 seasons behind, the store was filled with treasures from previous years and the interior was still untouched. They even had the accent on the top of the É and no Hedi in sight. Such a lovely trip to the past.
There is a small, but very intriguing Ellsworth Kelly -exhibition ongoing at Centre Pompidou definitely worth visiting. It gathers for the first time all Kelly’s window studies together along with photography, which brings so much depth into his works.
Galerie Patrick Seguin
The Row AW2019 / voguerunway.com
Alexander Calder at the Picasso Museum
Gemma Ward shot by Alexandra Nataf and styled by Ilona Hamer for Unconditional Magazine 7
I’ve tried to build a spring moodboard for couple of weeks now, but I’ve felt so disconnected with my thoughts lately. In a good way I mean. I’ve constantly had new ideas for projects I want to start and things I want to create, into the extent that I wasn’t sure anymore where to focus on.
To get my mind together, I took a day off just to visit some of my favorite places in Paris; Galerie Patrick Seguin and the Picasso Museum (The Calder-Picasso -exhibition I wrote about earlier). Over the years I’ve understood the importance of aesthetically satisfying environment to my creativity. I can’t stand mess and clutter, and whenever I feel disconnected, I need to get myself to an environment that calms me.
The same goes for clothes. I might wear the same outfit for a week and I don’t mind. I like to dress up from time to time end get creative with my wardrobe, where I love every single piece I have, but I’m intrigued by the idea of not to start my mornings with a decision of what to wear. Only depending on the weather I might change from all black to all white. Or something in between.
On a side note, do you also think those The Row shoes are a definition of freedom?
After a quiet period, there are finally some interesting exhibitions and events happening in Paris. I heard about the Calder-Picasso exhibition about a year ago and I’ve been waiting for it ever since, so obviously I went to visit the opening day. It was perfect.
I can’t say I know that much about art, but can definitely tell if an exhibition is well organized or not. I get easily bored with too much text to read or too many videos to watch, and very often the curation just feels weird and makes it hard to stay focused. But in the Calder-Picasso one, I could have stayed for hours. The Picasso museum itself is such a beautiful building, and the placement of each Calder piece was extremely well thought to fit in, how it brings out the details of the ceiling and how the natural light hits them. And most importantly, I loved how they matched the artwork from Picasso and Calder together.
Finally I took some time off to visit Villa Savoye near Paris in Poissy. It is a house Le Corbusier designed for the Savoye family in the 30’s and one of the most significant buildings in the modern architecture.
I visited on a weekday and was lucky enough to discover the house all by myself. On a sunny day the sun rays were flooding in and revealed the gorgeous shapes and details. My favorite part of the house is the round entrance with windows from ground to ceiling. I just wished there were some furniture, as everyone knows I’m a huge fan of Le Corbusier’s chairs!