le Corbusier house.
looking up, le Corbusier House.
Yesterday morning we started out at the first endeavour of the Swiss Architect, le Corbusier, in the 16th arrondissement. It is the “Villa La Roche”, a home for a businessman, built in 1923. Its angles and openness are unusual even today, although it seems a little less bizarre than it did eighty-odd years ago.
View from Mirabeau bridge. The Bateau-Mouche is turning around Liberty to make its return trip.
“The Black Kangaroo”, temporary exhibit, with central lawn and Eutelsat balloon in the background.
This one’s called “Butterfly”, but Seamus and I think it’s a sea slug.
We walked from the Corbusier Foundation over to the Parc André-Citroën. These grounds were originally his munitions factory. After the War, he turned the factory into an auto plant. A few years ago, the spot was turned into a park. We all thought it was really well done, with colourful sculptures, a central lawn, and pocket gardens on the other side of a tall hedge (handy for having quiet contemplation on the one side, and frolicking schoolchildren on the other). The lawn is also where the Eutelsat balloon is parked. Unfortunately, yesterday it was too windy for the balloon to operate.
Since most of our party had already seen the Eiffel Tower and la Liberté up close on Sunday, we took transit straight from the parc to the Orsay Museum. Today, the work of the Impressionists is the most widely accessible to anyone wanting to see art: the paintings are bright, the subjects cheerful, and the depictions recognizable. You don’t have to stand on your head to see the woman reading her book or the children walking through the field of wild poppies. The interesting thing is that they were quite a shocking group in their day, with their dots of colouring and their un-noble subject matter, and so many like-minded artists had their works refused at the conservative Academy that they banded together to become the Impressionists. The Orsay Museum is the place to go to view these works.