March 27, 2014 § Leave a comment
Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé may have spotted Robert Mapplethorpe’s talent early on, but for a long time France failed to give the legendary American photographer the institutional recognition he deserved. Not anymore.
Today the Grand Palais in Paris is unveiling the artist’s first retrospective in the country, while the Musée Rodin is gearing up for an intimate presentation of his photographs, shown alongside works by the great French sculptor Auguste Rodin.
The exhibition marks a new direction for the Grand Palais, which has only recently started to dedicate major solo shows to photographers. It began with the 2012 Helmut Newton exhibition, also curated by [Jérôme] Neutres.
Opening on April 8, the Musée Rodin exhibition will gather 102 photographs presented alongside 50 Rodin sculptures. Italian curator Germano Celant was the first to link the two artists. But it was the French art critic Judith Benhamou-Huet who suggested the idea to the Musée Rodin—she’s co-curator of the show, associate curator of the Grand Palais retrospective, and the author of the monograph Dans la vie noire et blanche de Robert Mapplethorpe, out this month.
“We chose Mapplethorpe’s most sculptural photographs, then looked for pieces that would resonate with them in our collection,” explains co-curator of the Musée Rodin show Hélène Pinet. “It’s very much Mapplethorpe-Rodin, not Rodin-Mapplethorpe.”
March 23, 2014 § Leave a comment
Paris is one of the cities I know best, so it comes as no surprise that my first assignments this season will have me guiding there for much of April and all of May. I’ve been busy with research for the past couple of weeks, and there’s a series of posts on the City of Light in the works for this spring, but I thought I’d start with a little instant gratification: a mix I listened to last year when I stayed in various Parisian hotels for a few weeks.
The thing about traveling for a living is that you don’t get to make your own schedule very often – at least that’s the case in my line of work, which has me accompanying groups of up to fifty people all over Europe on a strict schedule. I love my job, but there’s no mistaking it for a holiday. The exception? Those couple of hours in the evening, just as the sun is setting over whichever city I find myself in, when I can have a glass of wine and write. This mix is my go-to soundtrack – I hope it inspires you as much as it inspired me.
TRAVEL SERIES #2. Living out of a suitcase: A cinematic mix for long mornings and slow nights [click here to stream]
01. Cigarettes – Russian Red
02. Champagne Coast – Blood Orange
03. Misery Loves Company – New Build
04. Pretty Face – Soley
05. Pure Shores – All Saints
06. Toxic – Yael Naim
07. Man with the Movie Camera – The Cinematic Orchestra
08. Un, deux, trois – Saint Privat
09. Low Battery – Jaga Jazzist
10. Le prochain amour – Jacques Brel
11. L’ombre et la lumiere – Coralie Clement
12. Ever Fallen in Love – Nouvelle Vague
February 23, 2014 § Leave a comment
It’s a cold, overcast day in Bucharest, but what better time to start a project than late winter? By the time March rolls in, the hard work is done; all that spring energy can fuel creativity and play instead – and that’s what writing and travel are all about.
I started thinking about summer travel plans in March 2013. I didn’t know it at the time, but I’d spend four months later that year wandering around Europe as a tour leader. Both times I went to England I took the ferry from Calais, but I listened to this Heathrow playlist on the deck (and at the airport in Paris), so it felt appropriate to make it the first post on Built to Roam. London is my favourite city, and I’ve been told that this mix plays like a love letter.
Travel Series will be an ongoing feature on BTR.
01. The Lido – Adrian Johnston
02. The Victorians Are Here – The Secret Love Parade
03. St. James Infirmary – Allen Toussaint
04. Border Crosser – Trails and Ways
05. This Charming Man – The Smiths
06. I Wanna Be Adored – The Stone Roses
07. Pumpkin Soup – Kate Nash
08. Wandering Star – Portishead
09. Ruby, My Dear – Thelonious Monk
10. Size Too Small – Sufjan Stevens
11. Sun – Two Door Cinema Club
12. 110% – Jessie Ware
Click on the cover to stream the mix on 8tracks.