La Grand Arche Paris

Mural Art by Florence Blanchard

This summer I’ll be taking part in 2 interesting exhibitions: Adventures in Modern Abstraction at Stolen Space gallery in London, and This Will Ruin Everything at The Light House in Glasgow.

Last month I went to Paris to paint on the 19th floor of iconic building La Grande Arche. Pretty cool hollow cubic building from the late 80’s which is aligned with Champs Elysée, L’Arc de Triomphe and Le Louvre!DSC_1312_72DSC_1324_72

From wikipedia: ‘A great national design competition was launched in 1982 as the initiative of French president François Mitterrand. Danish architect Johann Otto von Spreckelsen (1929–1987) and Danish engineer Erik Reitzel designed the winning entry to be a late-20th-century version of the Arc de Triomphe: a monument to humanity and humanitarian ideals rather than military victories. La Grande Arche was inaugurated in July 1989, with grand military parades that marked the bicentennial of the French Revolution. It completed the line of monuments that forms the Axe historique running through Paris.’

IMG_6873_72IMG_6870IMG_6931

GYMKHANA

While on a post-graduation break out of the states I did an internship with Jethro Massey, a British filmmaker based in Paris. As Jethro was showing me a few tricks on Final Cut Pro, he handed me a small camera and told me to take one day to shoot something, and come back the day after with a short documentary.

Luckily I bumped into my old acquaintance Fernando Favier, aka Gymkhana, a music producer and visual artist from my hometown, who now lives in Paris.

Internationally known for his collaboration with rapper Mike Ladd, which led to the release of”Father Divine” on the label RoiR, Gymkhana also collaborated with artists such as Vj Milosh, writer Vincent Ravalec, and singer/ song writer Arthur H.

I followed Fernando in the streets of Parisian neighborhood Belleville, from morning to evening, asking him about his life and work. According to Wikipedia, Belleville is a colorful, multi-ethnic neighborhood and also home to one of the city’s two Chinatowns; the other is located in the XIIIe (13th) arrondissement. (…) The iconic French singer Édith Piaf grew up there and, according to legend, was born under a lamppost on the steps of the Rue de Belleville.(…) Many artists now live and work in Belleville and studios are scattered throughout this neighborhood. Some abandoned factories have been transformed into art squats, where several alternative artists and musicians, such as the band Les Rita Mitsouko began their careers.”

Below is the end result of my homework, my first ever documentary shot in one day….Gymkhana discusses his electro accoustic influences together with his desires to reside in a popular Parisian neighborhood that has inspired French artists for generations. The documentary is in French, english subtitles will come later!!