Archive for October, 2009

Metlinks OTW : Week 6, 09.10.09

So, have you seen the Turkish-colour version of Eiffel Tower? What do you think? Do you like/dislike it? Anyway, here are a few links that caught our attention last week that we’d like to share. And until the next edition, have a good weekend!

River Seine

  • La Fête des Vendanges is back for a 5-days festivities in Montmartre and this year’s theme is “Cabaret – Montmartre celebrates Les Trois Baudets”. The harvest celebration runs from 7th to 11th October (i.e. from a couple of days ago until this weekend). Here’s a nice write-up in English for non-Francophones.
  • Guimet Museum is currently hosting “In the land of the Dragon : Sacred Arts of Bhutan.” Not only religious items will be on exhibit, there are also two monks who perform their daily rituals on site, in a specially created space. The exhibition runs until 25th January 2010.
  • A new exhibition opens tomorrow at the Grand Palais, entitled “From Byzantium to Istanbul“, and will remain open until 25th January 2010. Like all exhibitions at the Grand Palais, one piece of advice – buy your tickets ahead if you don’t want to queue forever.
  • The Arts of Islam : Masterpieces from Khalili Collection is currently underway in Institut du Monde Arabe. About 470 pieces are on exhibit for the first time in Europe, until 14th March 2010.
  • Wee fashion news. While celebrated designers showcased their collections during Paris Fashion Week, fashionistas not in attendance flock to the shiny and brand new Uniqlo flagship in Paris. With names like Jill Sanders and Gilded Age, but at a reasonable price, it’s a bargain one wouldn’t want to miss!
  • Is Chase Emery Davis one of the youngest bloggers of Paris? Here’s his adventures while Chase’n Paris.
  • The circus village is back! A month full of fun and entertainment for families and kids in particular, head to Pelouse de Reuilly and clown about. ;)
  • A couple of weeks ago, we asked for help to locate the Cool French Dude. We’ve just found a site that helps “missed connections” like this – courtesy of Invisible Paris – known as Croisé dans le métro.
  • A slight diversion but this could be helpful to new residents of Paris. With the healthcare debates ongoing in the USA (have you heard all the crazy things, like “the reform will kill your grandma” etc) Julie Getzlaff is taking a look into healthcare in France, and has so far written Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.
  • The 20km of Paris run, in its 30th edition, will be taking place this Sunday, 11th October. The registration has closed but nothing is stopping you from going out and cheer the runners along! It starts at 10am, Pont d’Iena.

Eiffel Tower in red and white

Fiery red and icy white. That’s the colour order of the day for Eiffel Tower.


The special illumination runs every evening between 6th and 11th October, in conjunction with La Saison de la Turquie. It’s time to go out and take a few pics, if not a short video or two. It’s gorgeous!

And oh, if you look careful enough, with the top antenna being blue, you’re getting the French colours too! ;)

Eiffel Tower in Turkish colours (Photograph by Jean-Philippe Baltel)

Eiffel Tower in Turkish colours (Photograph by Jean-Philippe Baltel)

The women are watching

There are eyes and then there are eyes. In Paris, these eyes are the windows to the souls of tens of women from all over the world.

Eyes on Ile St Louis by JR

Eyes on Ile St Louis by JR

JR‘s outdoor instalment of Women are Heroes is nothing but inspirational, as they tell not only by image but also through stories narrated by the women behind the scene themselves (with a little help of a local-rate-call audioguide).

The outdoor exhibit (from 3rd October to 2nd November) around Ile St Louis is complemented with a secondary exhibit at the Pavillon de l’Arsenal at 21 boulevard Morland (4ème) (from 3rd October to 23rd October) which showcases JR’s stint for the Women series in Rio earlier this year.

Both exhibits are free.

Ps: I wonder what project he’ll be working on next. His works are story-telling of life and emotions. They move me. I would love to get involved.

Mona Lisa, Michelangelo, Michallon, err McDo?

Louvre Visitor Guide by Cathy Wilcox

Louvre Visitor Guide by Cathy Wilcox

Somehow this escaped my attention until today – a new McDonald’s restaurant and McCafé due to open in the Louvre next month! It will be housed at the rather dashing Galerie du Carrousel (du Louvre), which I must admit to find hard to imagine how the McDo fits in, as claimed by museum spokeperson.

According to London Telegraph :

… the museum told the Daily Telegraph it had agreed to a “quality” McCafé and a McDonald’s in place by the end of the year, which it said was “is in line with the museum’s image”.

“The Louvre welcomes the fact that the entirety of visitors and customers, French or foreign, can enjoy such a rich and varied restaurant offer, whether in the museum area or gallery,” the museum said in a statement.

The McDonald’s would represent the “American segment” of a new “food court”, and would be situated “among (other) world cuisines and coffee shops,” it wrote.

It added that the franchise owner “has taken the utmost care in ensuring the quality of the project, both in culinary and aesthetic terms”.



Seriously, how does a fast-food restaurant fit in the image of a world class museum AND a former palace? This is not just about McDo. Had this been Quick or any other fast-food chain, I’m still going to think along the line “goodness, this is blasphemous!”.

For so long, the boutiques at the Carrousel du Louvre have been mainly home and beauty products, newsagents, watch shop and the likes. The divergence into fast-food is pretty stretched, in order to have common ground. (I have never been all that pleased with Autogrill that’s currently there either but that’s another story.)

Moreover, why would fast-food be promoted in this day and age within a cultural centre when obesity is a global problem? The bottom-line is profit margin I guess. Feed the masses, herd them in and out quickly, make it self-service so less employees are needed (I believe premium space like Louvre should be awarded only if there are job created and maintained) etc.

I can’t help but feel, this is a dark day for arts and culture, and well-being.

Metlinks OTW : Week 5, 02.10.09

“There is but one Paris and however hard living may be here, and if it became worse and harder even – the French air clears up the brain and does good – a world of good.” — Vincent Van Gogh

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