Haussmann certainly knew a thing or two about boulevards. We’ll forget the military undertones of rapid troop movements and easily barricadable side-streets, the man knew width and indeed length. Why, Baron, you are spoiling us with your enormous streets.
Why would someone – in fact a lot of people – walk round the Picasso Museum clutching their cameras (or their mobile phone cameras) and pretty much just walk up to each painting and snap it fairly hurriedly? In the case of one phone camera user, there was about as much interest in the art as Baron Haussmann up there had in bends in the roads. It’s easy to criticize – oh so deliciously easy – but the young man in question may of course have already spent months poring over books and visiting galleries around the world and perhaps was working on a research thesis about the representation of fine art through the medium of a 1.3 megapixel lens. Or he was a twat.
One guy was poised to take a photo of one of the largest works in the collection (Femmes à leurs toilettes) only for a woman to have the audacity (or bare-faced cheek as PP himself might have depicted it) to sit down on the bench in front of the painting and acutally look at it. Cameraman looked quietly exasperated as he waited for her to move. She wasn’t budging – it’s an arresting work of art – so eventually he moved to a different position for the photo… only for a guy (I suspect deliberately – and if so I salute him) to sit at the other end of the bench. I left the salle at this point as I was about to start laughing in a manner unbefitting of an art gallery – although the Big P had a good sense of humour so maybe he’d have appreciated it.
Finally, had fantastic dinner at Petrelle last night. A blog-relevant story from the meal: a journalist was complaining that a colleague had recently blogged about a lunch the two of them had had, heaping praise on the risotto. So far, so good… except wait… the blogger hadn’t ordered the risotto, she’d merely tasted some of the story’s narrator’s risotto and then failed to give her credit for her clearly superior ordering skills. The depths some people will sink to. Moral of the story: never trust a blogger. So, before I get intro trouble, credit to Rachel for choosing Petrelle, and thanks to the other Rachel for the story.