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A Sleepless Night of Culture and Conversation

Grace Teshima is one of those rare people who opens their homes and their hearts to promote culture and conversation. On a regular basis, she strips the walls bare of her large Montmartre apartment to make room for artists’ works, to be exhibited and shared among her wide circle of friends. Last night she chose to display the photographic works of three artists: James Kigin, Dimitri Fagbohoun and Roland Brénin.

From the windows she has a view of lower Montmartre and the long stretch of rue des Abbesses. The natural bright colors of the lights on the street and the animation of its characters (a band played at the corner attracting an enthusiastic crowd) are representative of the colorful “quartier” made famous by the artists of the past century who gathered there, painted there, drank and partied there…Pissarro, Picasso, Modigliani, Van Gogh, Matisse, Derain, Renoir, Degas, Utrillo, Toulouse-Lautrec, among others who came to inhabit Montmartre. By the end of the 19th-century, Montmartre became one of the principal artistic centers of Paris. It seems fitting that Grace should act as patron for others in the 21st-century.

The scene acted as a reminder of what’s to come this Saturday night, October 6th from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. October 7th — an entire night designed to bring together culture and conversation, not to just a circle of friends, but to all the circles of the friends of Paris…”La Nuit Blanche.”

This is the 6th edition of “Sleepless Night” as first proposed to Mayor Bertrand Delanoë by the Deputy of Culture, Christophe Girard — to devote an entire night to bringing together contemporary artists and those that take pleasure in their works. The success from the beginning was overwhelming, immediately copied by other cities around the world, from Rome to Montréal, Madrid to Riga, Brussels to Shanghai. La Nuit Blanche unites artistic expression, urbanism and architecture, cultural heritage and the people within.

This year, as with each year, new original works have been created by local and international artists to tempt and entertain you…works of all genres, all generation

s, all horizons. The program is universally diverse, using image, technologoy and theater.

Nothing will be of the usual. Don’t miss…

The “Astral Body Church” videographic projection onto the facade of the Eglise Saint-Eustache of bodybuilders in fitness poses with surprisingly aged faces…

The “Compagnie Carabosse” 2000 points of fire lit simultaneously in the Jardin des Tuiliers along the central alley…

The Robert Stadler installation of a series of illuminated spheres levitating in space in advance of a giant question mark at the Eglise Saint-Paul Saint-Louis…

And the other almost 100 works on display to the public in five major parts of the city!

For the full program, visit the city Web site at: http://www.paris.fr/
and for a printed program, stop by any Mairie (City Hall).

Then, get a good night’s sleep the night before so you won’t be caught deflated before the crack of dawn!

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris

P.S. I am proud to report that in late December, Grace Teshima will be exhibiting my own daughter’s photography (Erica Simone, who celebrates her 22nd birthday today)! To be the mailing list to learn about upcoming events, email Grace at [email protected] To see photos of Paris by Erica Simone visit /parlerparis/parisphotos/

P.P.S. Mark your calendar to join us next Tuesday, October 9th, for Parler Paris Après Midi from 3 to 5 p.m. at La Pierre du Marais. It’s free and it’s fun. Visit /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more information.

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