Last summer when one of my dearest and most inspirational and creative friends was visiting Paris for the first time (Oh dear, I’ve still got so many photos to share), but one of my favorite things that we did was take a stroll through the Dynamo exhibit at the Grand Palais. After reading about it about on Anne’s blog, we knew we had to make the trip to discover this magically created space of light and motion.
On show at the humongous and stunning Grand Palais, the exhibit was subtitled “A century of light and motion in art, 1913-2013″, which already is alluring enough, right? The different sized rooms featured from one to many installations by various contemporary artists, all unique and bright, light and dark, flashy and distant. We went from space to space together, discussing inspirations, ideas and dreams. Considering the time period of some of the installations’ creation, it was simply breathtaking to think about how so early on light and motion in a given space could effect the way we view everything around us as human beings. It was a very interactive expo that permitted visitors to feel a part of the piece, even if that means just wandering through a room with dense fog and colored lights, witnessing the change of shapes and color with the help of seemingly random lights, or standing in the absolute perfect spot of a hall of archades to visualize the truest and most immense of a trompe l’oeil. Long story short, we had a hoot.
Although the exhibition ended last July, I wanted to share the photos from this magical place sa it seems like it was yesterday. If you missed it, I hope this doesn’t make you regret taking a spin through it. If you did go, I hope you found it as enchanting and powerful as I did. See the teaser for Dynamo here, and a video put together by my friend Puxan here.
The Grand Palais often has fantastic expos on, so check out their program here.
I had an interesting conversation with a friend today. I was thinking about how I have always lived in a part of the world with seasons. I’m not sure how I would handle living in a place with a steady climate. I love that the seasons bring a change in how we bundle, what we do to relax and how we live.
In the Summer we are outside, soaking up the sun and our eyes are always squinting just a little bit more. The days are longer and work is sometimes put on the back burner. In the winter, however, our days are short and sometimes filled with fog, rain, or even better, snow. We are weaker in a sense that we can get sick from not properly bundling up. We make sure to eat with the season to keep our bodies as warm as can be. The extra layers pile on the back of chairs and doors to prepare for facing the cold air. We may take more time to relax and be at home (I certainly do in the winter). Aside from these two extremes, there are Spring and Fall that help us transition between the extremes. Each season seemed to last forever in my mind as a kid. Seasons remain markers of time, but boy are they shifting from one to another vite.
Despite what season we are in, we can always look forward to a new one in the near future. To be honest I’ve often got another one on my mind… I don’t daydream about it with anticipation or anything, I just think about it. Today as I strolled through the Marais and Ile Saint Louis through the crisp winter air, I couldn’t help but remember the same stroll I took last summer.
I remember when we first moved to the 16th people would always be like, “but that’s such a lame area, there’s nothing to do”, amongst other comments. I’ve always just been happy to live anywhere within Paris’s city limits. Paris is small, and always evolving. It’s easy to get around, so I really don’t give a rat’s ass about living in a “cool” neighborhood. I’d rather like my apartment than live near a bar I frequent… My personal opinion, but hey. This is just to say that Parisian “lame” neighborhoods can surprise you!
My mother-in-law, however, immediately said when we moved where we did: “You guys will be so close to the Serres d’Auteuil!” with such amazement and excitement. Well, she was right. We are very close to what is now one of my favorite places in all of Paris for a stroll: Les Serres d’Auteuil. The park and botanical gardens were initially created in 1761 before being abandoned. The greenhouses that are present today were built in 1895 when the city of Paris took it over.
This magical part of Paris is just on the city’s southern border. It consists of a complex of greenhouses in the middle of a beautiful park that is never crowded. Valerie and I went for a stroll there at the end of the summer on a hot day, and since I’ve really enjoyed going back in the autumn (Stacey Lamb took some awesome pictures of Olivia and I there, that I will share in the near future on here).
The park and botanical gardens are open year round, with free entry.