Archive for the contemporary art Category

G U E S T S B O O K

Posted in Art, art advisor, art and culture, Art Fair, art gallery, contemporary art, exhibition, GUESTSBOOK, hotel, hotels and restaurants, Lifestyle curator, luxury, monuments, museums, Paris, personal shopper, places, private guide in Paris, restaurants, shopping, shops, travels, trips on January 8, 2020 by ParisDeluxe&Arty

I’ve realized I had 13 pages of warm and lovely acknowledgments received from my wonderful clients since 2013 and  I’ve never published  them…so I’ve decided to share with you the ones I’ve received last year. In my file PAGES (see on right) I will post all of them, starting with the most recent, going back to 2012.

Year 2019

  • December : 

Mr and Mrs L. – From Hickory North Carolina / GLH clients

Anne, thank you so VERY much for the wonderful tour.  We were so lucky to have secured you.  You were wonderful.  We will retrieve.
Thanks again and have a great day.

Gene P. from Forth Worth Texas, asking ideas about Brussels :

You always have such fantastic ideas !

My best to you

 

  •   October   : 

Beth W. from Washington:

Thank you so much Anne.  We are so grateful that you were there to show them around our favorite city!  I’m sure they told you but neither of them had ever traveled to Paris so having you as their guide was a real treat.

Hopefully David and I will find a time to visit this year and we will definitely reach out to you for another tour.

All the best, Beth

David G from Washington : 

Anne – you are the best. I’m just a little bitter we couldn’t be along as well!

( David and Beth offered a tour to a friend 😉

  • September : 

Leslie  Kramer LC designtravel- Philadelphia 

Dear Anne,
Carol & I want to thank you for a wonderful tour today.

Lee D. from NY

Hello Anne !

I am finally back in Antibes and settled down and I wanted to tell you how much our team was delighted and charmed by our two tours and all of the time we spent with you😊

Personally, I adored spending time with you and you helped to make our trip a first-class experience…..a real partnership.

Let’s do keep in touch and I wish you a lovely rest of the month,

Warmest

Lee Dufour

VP of Marketing & Communications Yves Delorme

  • June  : 

Amy W. from Baltimore : 

Hello Anne! I hope you are well. A few years ago my husband and I had the pleasure of spending a day in Paris with you –– the morning was bakeries, cheese and desserts, and the afternoon was a wonderful art tour. To job your memory, I was in Paris lecturing at SciencePo, and my husband is an amateur baker who fell in love with all the bakeries you brought us to. It remains the highlight of our travels to France.

It’s great to hear back from you! We will change our plans so that we can spend an entire day with you – The agenda sounds terrific, and we are very much looking forward to seeing you again!

  • May :

Richard Najarian from Michigan

Anne,

Thank you for all of your assistance with our trip. It was a pleasure to meet you and to learn as much as you can share in 3 days.

This was a memorable visit for our family.
Richard

(Again, thank you for a wonderful tour of Paris. It will be very memorable for all of us. Richard)

 

  • Avril

Mo Mozuch- newsweek journalist from NY

We loved our tour and gained such a wonderful perspective on this beautiful city.

Best,

Mo and Lauren

 

  • March

Tatiana P. from Russia

Dear Anne,
Thank you very much for an interesting tour and experience of Paris. We now can appreciate it even more. Everything you spoke about sparked our interest of the city. Thank you for being so professional and patient with us! We had a great time, and thank you again.
Many best wishes,
Tatiana + Family

 

Erin B. from New-York 

it was a pleasure spending the day w you. Hope to see you on our next trip.

Thanks and take care,

Erin

 

Amy A. from NY :

Anne,
Thank you for an unforgettable tour of the louvre!  😘♥️🙏🏻
Warm regards,
Amy

Today was amazing!!!!  ❌⭕️

 

Nimi Ponnudurai from Amsterdam : 

I have already sung your praises to many people as I have to be quite honest I usually don’t like guided tours in museums as they bore me. Yours was fun and interesting even though we had very limited time.

 

  • January :

Mariann di N. from NY
Thank you so much for sending along information. You have such an interesting and impressive background. I looked at your Instagram and you’re also a great photographer.

( that was before the tour and after  below )

Anne,

Thank you for your time and expertise today! We so enjoyed our tour today and enjoyed every minute. Please let me know when you’re in NYC and I will connect with you when I’m back in Paris. Thank you,

Mariann

 

Erin Bass  from NY :

Hi Anne- quite an impressive background and offering you provide. I’m waiting to discuss with my husband tonight and will get back to you ASAP.

Thanks! Erin

( before the tour)

 

Abe Held from NY

Hi Anne
Thank you so much for your great insight and touring. We had a great time.
We loved he restaurant yesterday for lunch and the girls asked me to ask you for a fun a lot for dinner tonight.
Thanks

 

YEAR   2018

  • Sept 2018

– Sarah F. from New Canaan,  Connecticut

Hi Anne

I want to thank you again for making our trip to Paris so memorable, educational and special! We enjoyed our tours very very much.

Best

Sarah

 

Gene P. and Stephen C. from Forth Worth, Texas 

It was an exceptional day we shared. Your expertise is always much appreciated. We shall return.

All my best until then,

Gene

 

Amy France from California

Hello Anne,

Before we leave back to the States, I wanted to circle around with you and thank you for your time with us.  As you noted, none of us are educated in art and you did an excellent job of educating beginners such as us and maximizing our time together in the most efficient, enjoyable and practical of ways.  We look forward to seeing you in a future trip.

All the best,

Amy

PS Luke is still in awe that he actually saw the real Mona Lisa!

Marcia B.  from USA :

– Dear Ms. Muraro, congratulations on your very wonderful write up in Departures Magazine! According to Frank and Dana M. you are a wonderful and special guide!

Thank you for trying to include me in your schedule. It doesn’t quite work for me. I promise I will plan further in advance with you for my next trip to Paris.

Until then, all the best.

Warm regards,

Marcia B.

 

Carolyn H.,  from Carpinteria, California

Dear Anne,

They had the most wonderful day with you. Thank you so much for making Georgia’s first trip to Paris so very special.

Kindest regards, Carolyn

 

Scott N. , from Washington DC

Anne, MaryAnn and I have not stopped talking on how much we learned from you yesterday and most important also enjoying being with you. We look forward in seeing you on our next visit to Paris. We will also refer you to friends to have the same enrichment we have gained from you. Our best. Scott and MaryAnn N.

 

  • August :

 

-Katie K. from USA

After I’ve sent to may client  restaurants suggestions for her trip : 

You’re the best, thank you so much!! I’m hungry already 😉

 

  • July :

 

Hayden H – from Boston

This client offered a tour to friends : 

Ann,  once again, you are the best!!  R and S sent me such a nice note about the AWESOME tour you provided.

We are coming back soon – maybe Le Hotel and lots of shopping.  Will call you.

Makes me so happy.

Cheers,

-HH

 

Jeremy S.from Deerfield, Ill :

Thank you so very much! Our pleasure you were wonderful to have with us and we got so very much out of our time together.

Alissa his wife  :

Wonderful meeting you and had a great time touring and learning with you.

 

Jim Gauthier , travel agent from Virtuoso agence in Dallas owned by Strong family, writing  to a virtuso travel agent from Decouvertes :

with this email I refer you to my friend and art expert, Anne Muraro, who lives in Paris, was trained at the Louvre, serves as a guide and consultant for many VIP guests, including American Movie Stars, and is very well connected in the art community in Paris… Anne is the best and I always seek her out for my most discerning clients or those who have an interest in art but need a good teacher to accompany them.

 

  • June :

Adrienne  Harris , senior travel designer from Travel Essentialist, Spain

Hi Anne,

I hope you are having an amazing day!

I just spoke to David and he gave us the most amazing feedback about you. Thank you so much for your efforts and I really look forward to working with you in future.

Kindest regards,

Adrienne

 

-Melinda Douglas  from USA

Dear Anne.  It is we who thank you.  What a wonderful day you out together for us.  We loved it!!!

Many thanks for your help. And thanks again for a comprehensive and interesting Paris tour!

Best…Melinda.

 

Carolyn Barry, from Indagare Travel NY

Dear Anne,

How are you? I hope you’re doing well!

I had a phone call with Jonathan B. a few days ago. I wanted to let you know that he had nothing but great things to say about you! The family had a fantastic time in Paris, and said you were “extremely detailed, knowledgable, thorough, and best of all you were attentive with the girls.”

Thank you, again, for all of your help!

Caroline Barry –

 

  • April :

– Caroline Barry,  trip designer from Indagare Travel NY

Anne, it has been such a pleasure working with you and I have nothing but good things to say about your services, your organization, and your professionalism / attention to detail, so I look forward to passing along your contact information to my colleagues. I do hope we work together on another Paris trip soon!

All the best,

Caroline

 

  • March :

Robin  S. from NY

Thank you for the great tour of the Louvre we really enjoyed it.

Thank you again for creating such an amazing experience for us…..

Max is asking where you recommend for the Best ham sandwich i promised i would take him today!!!!!

Hope you had a great evening

Best Always, Robin

 

Caryn B. from NY

Hi Anne –

Thanks for an amazing few days. We all really enjoyed it and are sad to leave Paris! Hopefully we will be back soon.

Best,

Caryn

 

  • February :

Rony Berlin from USA

Thank you Anne for a wonderful tour.  Rae especially loved Montmartre and Effiel Tower plus the walking tours and of course the breads and sweets!! Lunch was perfect.

Merci beaucoup!!

 

– Leslie Kravet from NY

I hope you are doing well.  It was so nice spending the day with you under blue, glorious skies!!!  Thank you!!

Enjoy the day!  We look forward to our next visit!!

 

  • january :

-Pipa Gore from USA

Wow! Your background is fascinating. What incredible experiences you have had! Thank you so much for sending this!

 

Christie’s  Paris  for their vip client  Benny C. :

Thank you again, Anne. This was really a life saver for us here in Paris.

Thank you Anne, they’ve enjoyed the tour very

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE VENICE BIENNALE 2019

Posted in Art, art advisor, art and culture, contemporary art, event, exhibition, Lifestyle curator, museums, travels, trips, Venice on August 13, 2019 by ParisDeluxe&Arty

You still have until november 24th to experience the Venice Biennale  2019 ! It’s so huge and the offer – regarding temporary exhibitions and events- besides the giardini’s pavilions and the Arsenal are so abundant  that it’s important to prepare your visit ahead.  Here is my selection for you :

My favorite pavilions :

Well this year in the Giardini only 4 retain my attention  :

  • Switzerland : they could have won the Gold Lion ! Pauline Baudry and Renate Lorenz present a groovy installation, both sensorial and physical,   called ” Moving backwards” , which is actually a symbolic resistance to the regressive global political background we are living.
  • Denmark : a mesmerizing installation with a sci-fi movie  and sculpture by Larisa Sensour-danish- palestinian artist-where history, identity and memory are threads leading us in a world where individual experience is meeting collective one.
  • Brazil : more dance ! I feel like music and choreography are very present this year and I don’t complain. Here the wild rythms of the installation called ” Swinguerra “, mix of guerra ( war) and swing, takes you deeply. The artists Barbara Wagner and Benjamin de Burca filmed and photographed street dance battles performed by gifted young people. Freedom and individual differences blended in a cultural mix are the key words , becoming  even more precious now knowing the current political situation.
  • Serbia  :  1 painting by Djordje Ozbolt retained my attention. a perfect mix of symbolism, figuration and abstraction.
  • + pictures coming soon  😉 and more details as well for the following lists :

Italian pavilion in the giardini :

  • Henry Taylor’s portraits
  • Gabriel Rico ‘s installations

3) In the Arsenale I found many works filed with anxiety, evoking dark times, spreading a heavy energy but always extremely meaningful and well done. Among my favorite :

  • Gabriel Rico
  • Shilpa Gupta
  • Arthur Jafa
  • Tarek Atoui
  • Christine and Margareth Wertheim
  • Sun Yuan and Peng Yu

The golden lion has been awarded to Lithuanian pavilion and it’s must see ! Actually it’s an experience as the art piece is an operawork-performance.

4° My favorite temporary exhibitions in the Serenissima :

  • Luc Tuymans in Palazzo Grassi
  • Punta della dogana- Pinault collection
  • Kounellis in Prada Foundation
  •  Carpenters workshop at Ca’ d’oro
  • Arp at Peggy Guggenheim’s collection
  • Helen Frankenthaler at Palazzo Grimani
  • Glass Stress in Murano

Bars :

After a long day of visit where to have delicious ciccheti ? Just in front of famous Frari church at lovely Café dei frari, the best place is oustside, standing by the canal.

If you prefer a more sophisticated and refined atmosphere, I do recommend  an historical palazzo transformed into a splendid luxury retreat : Aman Venice in Papadoppoli palace.The peace is breathtaking and cocktails are stunning ! Just memorable and fabulous.

Restaurants :

After the Arsenale visit Corte Sconta will be your heaven of peace ! The fishes are so delicious and you can relax in the lovely courtyard, dreaming about Corto Maltese adventures.

When in Murano book absolutely at Busa alla torre da Lele : the best venetian fry and my favorite vongole !

 

more to come at the end of september , thanks for you patience 😉

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Venice Biennale 2017

Posted in Art, art advisor, art and culture, Art Fair, art gallery, contemporary art, event, Lifestyle curator, travels, trips, Venice on August 23, 2017 by ParisDeluxe&Arty

 

You still have time to visit the Venice Biennale, until november 26 th exactly. We were there one month ago and I had few big crushes I wanted to share with you. Let’s start with the Giardini and my top 5 pavillions :

1°  Switzerland : the  pavilion is a tribute to Giacometti who actually never represented his country in the Biennale. The installation/ movie made Birchler and Hubbard moved us so deeply ! It’s about the forgotten love of the sculptor called Flora Mayo, which is also an edifying destiny of a woman artist coming from USA at the beginning of the century, thanks to the support of her family, until the crisis of 1929 ruined her artistic hopes and life… Nothing remains from her creations except a photograph of a wonderful bust she made of Giaco…I’m still haunted by her story.

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Corea :  Glad to discover Cody Choi, an enfant terrible of contemporary art. Subversive,  transgressive, and meaningful.

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France : The day we visited the Giardini was really  magical as Nigel Godrich the producer of Radio head came to the pavilion-studio for a string session recording and the artist Xavier Veilhan was there too. Creation in motion.

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Austria : up to you to activate famous Erwin Wurm one minute sculpture.  Hilarious !

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5° Belgium  : the somptuous dark and mysterious images by Dirk Braeckman mesmerized me. I admire greatly their pictorial quality.

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The german pavilion is out of competition if I could say as the excellent artist Anne Imhof -who received the golden lion- choose to present an impressive live performance for the opening and ..nothing remains for it. Go and see it nevertheless.

 

In the Arsenale, my favorite works were :

Julian Charriere  

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Michelle Stuart  

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Ernesto Neto  

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Leonor Antunes

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Kader Attia 

Alicia Kwade 

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Don’t miss  also these 2 pavilions in the Arsenale :

  • China, especially with two artists whose artworks are displayed on the ceiling : Wangtianwen and Yaohuifen. 

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  • and the Georgian one  with Vajiko Chachkhiani . Everyone is talking about his outstanding installation : a  house where a non stoppable inside rain will ruin everything…

Big crush also for the nigeran pavilion,  located in  Scoletta dei Battioro e dei Tiraoro,  a building from early 18th century, that was once home to Venice’s gold thread and gold leaf guild. Moreover this is the first participation of this country for the Biennale. Peju Alatise ‘s installation, evoking a yoruba tale is a must see ! Formal perfection and moving background with an actual echo of african female condition.

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The best exhibitions to see in Venice during this Biennale  :

Palazzo Fortuny and Axel Vervoordt choice. A must attend rendez-vous , the true spirit of  connoisseurs, but, alas , the last edition… so Enjoy !!

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2° Dont miss, next to Santa Maria dei Miracoli the outstanding Palazzo Soranzo van Axel : 

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In this place, just refurbished , you can see a group show curated by Pouchkine museum. I loved especially 2 excellent artworks :

  • a magnetic video by David Claerbout about a strange wood.IMG_5944.jpg
  • an impressive sound installation by Yri Kalendarev that you can activate

 

Prada Foundation : a complex exhibiton – very german-  with Thomas Demand, Alexander Kluge and Anna Viebrock, that turns to be a strange and disquieting experience for the visitor… but really worth doing !

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I invite yo to go on my Insta and turn the clock back to mid- august to see my posts from Venice , including the Biennale @parisdeluxearty ! 

 

 

 

4 memorable days in Montecarlo, Monaco !

Posted in Art, art advisor, art and culture, Art Fair, contemporary art, event, hotel, hotels and restaurants, luxury, Montecarlo, museums, restaurants, trips on May 3, 2016 by ParisDeluxe&Arty

We just come back from Montecarlo and that was a memorable and  delicious stay ! We went there for the new Art Fair called ArtMontecarlo that took place in Grimaldi forum, very well located. 39 galleries participated,  the major part were french, belgium, german, italian, among the best ones like Galleria Continua, Almine Rech Gallery, Tornabuoni, Laurent Godin, Eva Meyer, Nathalie Seroussi,  In Situ…The selection was excellent, I invite you to see more pics on my Insta account : parisedeluxearty.

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Dalinienne Empire – 1965

When I booked the hotel I didn’t hesitate : Hotel Metropole was my first and unique choice and I was so right ! The best atmosphere in Monaco thanks to Jacques Garcia signature : cosy, elegant, refined, stylish, arty without being too trendy, with an excellent good taste that unifies the ensemble. Actually you feel like living in a marvelous private mansion with a soul. A kind of  best kept secret in Monaco ! I loved the warm library-bar for a drink with friends. The spa is very pleasant, relaxing, and the pool side a dream, moreover  the lunch there was great with the best Pissaladiere I ever had ( french mediterranean specialty, kind of tart with glazed and roasted onions), without speaking of the  xxl tiramisu to share for dessert (see pic below) !

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The chef of the 2 hotel stared- restaurants is the famous and celebrated french big boss of  haute cuisine : Joel Robuchon . His family name himself looks like a recipe or a french cheese 😉

We tried his amazing japanese restaurant called Yoshi , the first truly  japanese restaurant launched by a french chef. Actually we were very lucky to have a table as this is not huge and always over booked, and I do understand why : this was just beyond ! many people in travel and  luxury business are talking about experience but really, I can tell the difference between a promise and the reality and … you won’t be disappointed by the promise : this place is a true space and time capsule ! Everything was absolutely divine  : the sushis (see 3rd pic below) were perfect, the king crab california rolls were the best I’ve ever had , the lacquered chicken was great…The decor is just breathtaking, totally mingei ( japonese minimalist, very aesthetic and functional) with an amazing chandelier floating above the table ( second pic below) overlooking a contemporary japonese garden (cf just below) . You’re just eating in an artwork !

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The first evening after the opening of the Art Fair we had a dinner with art dealers and curators at Nobu in Fairmont hotel that I do recommend also. The flavors , the textures are another tasty experience. Great place for happy dinner with friends. sorry I don’ t have pics…

Among the mythical place to party the Jimmy’s is on the top list and we went there ! The famous auctioneer Simon de Pury,  warmed up the house with his 80’s mix. IMG_6948.jpg

Many people think Monaco is artificial, superficial, all centered on real estate, cars, casino and diamonds…nobody thinks immediately about …museums or contemporary art centers and that’s a big mistake ! I tell you : The Rock- as we say in France- is becoming a place of interest for art lovers, thanks to the great personality of Marie-Claude Beaud,  director of the Nouveau Musée National de Monaco ( NMNM), i.e the New National Museum of Monaco, including  Villa Sauber (pic 1 below) – a magnificent villa from Belle Epoque time- showing a global artistic project by Italian artist Francesco Vezzoli called Villa Marlene, tribute to the divine Marlene Dietrich (2nd pic) , meanwhile Villa Paloma from 1013, located on the heights and offering a breathtaking view on the sea, houses  hyper-realist sculptures by Duane Hanson- very freaky ones !- and Thomas Demand tricky images (4th pic). Do not miss also the video by Oscar Murillo called Meet me Mr Superman presented there.

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So, no need to be a billionaire with a huge Yacht to enjoy Monaco as you can see.  Art lovers will be more than satisfied by their stay 😉 and I already want to come back in this very Deluxe&Arty place !

 

What to see in Paris this spring/summer, my top list :

Posted in Art, art and culture, contemporary art, museums, news, Paris, private guide in Paris, trips on April 12, 2016 by ParisDeluxe&Arty
  1. Paul Klee at Pompidou Center until august 1st  : A genius ! It’s the easiest way to sum up this unclassifiable artist, creator of 10 000 artworks !  He never belonged blindly to a mouvement, and always called into question the greatest modernist trends,   from cubism, dadaism, surrealism, constructivism and abstraction, through the lens of irony, the best way to remain himself. His great sens of composition and his fabulous  taste for colours, textures and materials made him an outstanding artist in the art history of XX th century. Run to see this exhibition where 60 % of the works displayed are shown for the first time in France ! I could speak during hours about this show that is so unique and will make you feel good after visiting it, despite a political context at the end of his life which was tragic.
  2. Picasso-sculptures  in Picasso museum until august 28th : another genius, at ease in many artistic disciplines, including sculpture ! The great idea of this exhibition is to show the total mastery of this medium by the spanish master, from the very beginning to the end in the 70 ‘s, from tiny to monumental, from naturalistic to almost abstract, from wood to stone and metal… Don’t come to find paintings- actually you have just one floor in the museum devoted to this medium-  but that’s gigantic and really worth seeing ! Without forgetting the exhibition of amazing ceramic works, paintings and works on paper  from 1990 to today by famous spanish artist Miquel Barcelo, until september 30th.
  3. Douanier Rousseau in Orsay museum  until july 17th : yes painting is like poetry sometimes and we have a good example with this wonderful exhibition that you cross like a dream. It’s also a clever and new approach with parallel drawn with many art references.
  4. Guillaume Apollinaire, the gaze of a poet, in Orangerie Museum  until july 18th : the famous french poet who was the friend of avant-garde-artist like Picasso and lover of Marie Laurencin, was also an important art critic and theorist. He defended cubism, forged the label  “Orphism” for Delaunay ‘s colorful art,  wrote probably himself the manifesto of futurism, and introduced Paul Guillaume in parisian artistic circles, just to quote few artistic achievements on his short-but prolific-career ! If you like and want to explore the relationships between art and poetry at the beginning of the XXth century , this exhibition is definitely for you.
  5. Between sculpture and photography, at Rodin museum july 17th : with works by John Chamberlain (1927-2011), Cy Twombly (1928-2011), Dieter Appelt (born 1935), Markus Raetz (born 1941), Mac Adams (born 1943), Gordon Matta-Clark (1943-1978), Richard Long (born 1945), Giuseppe Penone (born 1947). These artists have in common the use of both medium : photography  and sculpture in their practice, but the approach and results are all different. An interesting angle of view to discover in this pleasant exhibition.

You can also visit my Insta for more images : parisdeluxarty

How to follow Paris ART WEEK until April 3rd ?

Posted in Art, art advisor, art and culture, Art Fair, art gallery, contemporary art, event, luxury, news, Paris, places, private guide in Paris, shopping on March 31, 2016 by ParisDeluxe&Arty

Just visit and like my Insta account : parisdeluxearty   😉

https://www.instagram.com/parisdeluxearty

You will find my personal selection for :

  • Salon du dessin ( Old Master Drawing Fair) in Bourse (Stock Exchange building)
  • Drawing Now (Contemporary Drawing Fair) in Carreau du Temple in Le Marais
  • Art Paris Art Fair  in Grand Palais
  • PAD (design and decorative art fair) in Tuileries gardens

See you on Insta !

Let’s set Art in life and life in Art …

A romantic week-end in Bruges (Belgium)

Posted in Art, art and culture, Bruges, contemporary art, hotel, hotels and restaurants, luxury, monuments, museums, places, restaurants, Valentine's day on January 28, 2016 by ParisDeluxe&Arty

Last week  we went to Bruges 2 days. That was our 4th stay there but I never had the time to write about it and we enjoyed it so much I thought I should do something about the Venice-of-the-north as people nicknamed it. This city is enchanting, filled with infinite charm that’s why I recommend a hotel the same level : Tuilerieen Hotel, a 4 star charm- hotel , very well located , facing a canal and not far from the historical Grand Place (Great square). We had such a lovely and romantic bed chamber , very cosy, overlooking the canal, offering a great view on mediaeval architecture, with an amazing atmosphere by night :

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The Spa was just refurbished and we enjoyed the pool after a cold day outside  :

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We loved so much the buffet-breakfast with its chocolate fountain 😉

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As this is our 4th stay we are used to do a kind of pilgrimage to see the only sculpture by Michel-Angelo in Belgium : it’s the Madonna of Our-Lady church (Notre-Dame), early 16th century, which left Italy from the lifetime of the artist, acquired by wealthy fabric merchants.

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We like to stroll in the rooms of Groeningemuseum to admire the splendid flemish primitive artists like Memling or Van Eyck who challenged the imitation of reality with amazing minute details that the use of oil painting allowed.

We always have a lot of fun to rediscover the impressive and extravagant details of Hieronymus Bosch’s Last Judgment :

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Bruges is not only a city turned towards the past, you have also contemporary artists exhibited in museums like this month ,and until february 21st, Robert De Vriendt‘s fabulous hyper realist small scale paintings evoking fragmented pieces of tv drama -or web voyeurism- with very seductive colors and appealing manner.

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detail of The wood of Love and horror- oil/ canvas- 2011

Food is also an arty contemporary topic today sometimes ! You won’ t be disappointed in Bruges then, from top gastronomic to friendly neo-bistrot or cosy traditional flemish style restaurants, you’ll find what will fit your taste bud and eyes. Here is my top list :

  1. De Reften  : top level Bistrot revisiting traditional belgium classic in a contemporary neo70’s like decor. Excellent lunches, always !

2. Poule-Moule : among the best mussels in Bruges, very friendly place, simple and                                    rustic decor

3. Breydel de Conync : The best lobster ! Mussels are very good too. Friendly atmosphere.

4. Lizzie waffles : Simply The best waffles in town !

5. Marcolini chocolates : My favorite high-end chocolate maker ever in Belgium (and also in Paris, in my top 5) !! The best quality , don’t hesitate on more second 😉

Bonus : Aux Merveilleux. Would you like to experience Heaven under you palate ?  A miracle of vaporous cream and aerial meringue, this little dome of pleasure is called Merveilleux, with french/ flemish origins… My favorite is the white one called Incroyable (Uncredible !), tribute to french youngsters who after the Revolution, as a sign of reaction against dark Terror period,  used to parade around Palais Royal area. They wanted to introduce extravagant taste in fashion and original lifestyle, they were nicknamed Incroyables et Merveilleuses and refused to pronounced r letters !

The Boutique is a fairy tale !

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Bruges is the perfect trip for lovers, so why not going there for february 14th, Valentine’s day ?! But prepare well your stay as the city is small, the hotels and restaurants will be quickly full booked.

Wish you to fall in love very soon with the Venice of the north 😉IMG_5523.JPG