Sunday, June 25, 2017

Visiting Victor Hugo

Here I am in front of Victor Hugo's  house. It is located  in the Place Vosges, a very nice little park area  on the right bank of Paris. It was late at night, after a very nice meal,  and the museum was closed. It was a thrill to me to be where this  writer, artist,  and poet of the nineteenth century  created some of  those works we know.
Remember  the movie "The Hunchback of Notre Dame"? This man wrote the book. I read Les Miserables as a young girl and it moved me then. Born in 1802, and living until 1885, he saw many changes in his country and world . His work touches upon the political, social, and artistic issues of his time. He served in the National Assembly and campaigned against the death penalty. A rather outspoken critic of what he deemed unjust politics, this man was not afraid to speak his mind.
Hugo is an artist I have always  respected. I found out he is buried in the Pantheon, on the left bank, near the Sorbonne.That was the area I stayed when I first visited Paris almost 50 years ago.  Life does go in circles.
 Now I am back in Sedona, Arizona, remembering my visit and thinking about what I will be creating next.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

How do Artists Sell their work in Paris?

Here I am last week at an art "exposition", over in Paris, France. I was staying in the Marais area, which is full of quite sophisticated art galleries. But this was something different. 
In a large room named Halle des Blancs Manteaux, 
 (Hall of the White Coats) there were some 60 artists exhibiting their work for the weekend. To do this, they had to pay the promoter about $1,000 euros each.  A euro is about $1.15 each. So we artists always seem to pay to show, it's just quite pricey there.
I had a fun time going around and talking with various exhibitors. Speaking French is a big help. We had literally stumbled onto this opening on a Saturday evening. It closed at 8pm in the evening. Maybe to  go to eat dinner.   They
do that later over there. Have you ever tried to find a restaurant serving food in Sedona after nine pm?  Believe me, it doesn't happen here in rural Arizona.
The artist with me is named Hortense Varillon and she had the most cunning images on glass, almost in a shadow box. I had not seen anything like it and we got to talking. Funny how some things are universal. "Are you selling", I asked and got a spiel about how difficult it is to sell art today . I found this the common complaint from other exhibitors in the Halle, and the level of work was quite high. I bought her a beer, since I was not the optimum art customer this trip.
So how do artist try to sell their work in Paris? They do  whatever they can do, just like us.