Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Paris, an old museum? No! Let us discover the Parisian Modern Art with Valerie

Valerie - Garden of the "Palais Royal" (Royal Palace)
6:52 AM - Valerie, fast runner from Texas, chose Paris Running Tour to discover various aspects of Paris.

We sometimes say that Paris looks like a museum, a magnificent museum where everything is unchanging and everything remain still...
By following our sports route, we certainly saw numerous magnificent monuments and historic buildings which we wish eternal but also various places which present a new Paris in sync with the modern art.

As the Eiffel Tower at the time of its construction, too modern for some, these new creations were often the object of controversies.

Next to the classic but magnificent garden of the "Palais Royal", is a work of art which did not please everybody during its creation. Look at this strange view from the sky:

It is the work of the artist Daniel Buren, "Les deux plateaux" created in 1986, usually called the Columns of Buren:

Valerie - The "Colonnes de Buren", in the heart of the "Palais Royal"

Every column seems to grow, pushed by a unique root (visible under the railing).
An attractive courtyard surrounded by the more classic columns of the "Palais Royal"...

Just a step from the columns of Buren, at the exit of the Royal Palace, is another contemporary creation, the "Kiosque des Noctambules" (Kiosk of Night birds), created by Jean-Michel Othoniel in 2000:

Valerie - The "Kiosque des Noctambules"

This work of art is a metro entrance of the station "Palais Royal". If you go to the "Palais Royal", compare it with the other exit of the same subway station, situated 100 meters from there, in front of the Louvre, in style "Art nouveau", created in the 1900s, modernity of that time...

Another surprising view from the sky. What is this work?

The Fountain Stravinsky of Nikki de saint Phalle and Jean Tinguely (1983), tribute to the composer Stravinsky. Another beautiful example of contrast between modernity and classicism (look also at the old Church Saint Merri, probably modern at its time):

Valerie - The "Fontaine Stravinsky" also called "Fontaine des Automates"
(Usually, the automatons turn on themselves and throw water)

Ongoing controversy: the "Tour Triangle"!

A very nice, sports and cultural running!

Merci Valerie ! 

The route of the tour:

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The oldest monument of Paris with Laura, Marni, Peter, Marshall and Jason

Marni, Marshall, Laura, Jason et Peter - Jardin du Palais Royal
7:00 AM - Marni, Marshall, Laura, Jason and Peter are runners-friends coming from the United States.
Paris is still a little bit chilly in this early spring. Magnolias begin to bloom, as here in the garden of the "Palais Royal" (Royal Palace).

Our sports visit begins in the garden of the Tuileries to arrive quickly at "place de la Concorde", in front of the oldest monument of Paris, the Obelisk of Luxor:

Jason, Marni, Laura, Marshall and Peter - "Place de la Concorde" - Obelisk of Luxor

The Obelisk which we can see in the center of the "place de la Concorde" is more than 3000 years old. It comes from Egypt. 
The Pharaoh Ramses II had made two obelisks in the entrance of the Luxor temple, temple placed in the center of the old city of Thebes. The obelisk of "la Concorde" is one of them.

In 1830, the viceroy of Egypt Mehemet-Ali offers to France the obelisks of Luxor. 
Then begins, for the first obelisk, an adventure which will last more than 6 years: the preparation of the operation, the cutting down of the obelisk, its transport towards Paris and its erection "place de la Concorde" in 1836, with all the troubles such an expedition can generate (heat, diseases, expectation of the Nile flood, navigation and transport difficulties, etc.)  

Cutting down of the Obelisk in 1831 (the other obelisk is situated to the left by looking at the temple)

Erection of the Obelisk in 1836 "place de la Concorde" 
(The king Louis-Philippe and 200 000 Parisians attend the "show")

The other part of the "present", the second Obelisk, remained in Luxor, France not wishing to launch again such an operation!

Our visit continues along the Seine, the left bank then the right bank again. We cross the river Seine running on the "Pont des Arts", the famous footbridge:

Marshall, Laura, Marni, Jason and Peter - "Pont des Arts"
In the background of the photo above, we can admire the "Galerie du bord de l'eau" of the Louvre. Did you know that in this long corridor, king Henri IV organized fox hunting for his son, future Louis XIII?

We finish our running by returning by the garden of the Tuileries, very quiet in this morning of March:

Merci Peter, Marni, Marshall, Jason and Laura !

The route of the tour :

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Under the Eiffel tower with Rachel

Under the Eiffel Tower - Far off the Palais de Chaillot and the garden of Trocadéro
7:32 AM - Rachel, from Wales, is a regular runner with very good results... After the running tour in Paris, she arrived recently second woman of a half marathon.
At present, she prepares for the next London Marathon.
In this beginning of March, the sun is with us for an attractive tour of Paris by running.

Look at the photo above, we are just under the Eiffel Tower. Early morning in March, the place is very quiet. Compare with the crowd that we can find on Easter Mondays for example or on a summer weekend there... Running early morning in Paris is a delight!

Far off, on the other side of the Seine, we can recognize the majestic "Palais de Chaillot" which was built for the World Fair of 1937, last World Fair in Paris.

The Palace of Chaillot replaced the Palace of Trocadéro built in the same place, that time for the World Fair of 1878:

Aerial view of the "Palais du Trocadéro" - 1934

By the way, do you know what "Trocadéro" means?

It is a fort which is situated in Cadiz in Spain and the place of a French victory; France came to help Spain to restore the absolute monarchy in 1823 (the king Louis XVIII reigns at that time in France).
The Palace of the Trocadéro built in 1878 (and then the "Place du Trocadéro") owes its name to a royalist victory!

We went for running early, accompanied by the rising sun which lit for us the magnificent monuments of Paris:

The Arc de Triomphe. We are in his shadow, the sun beginning to light the Champs-Elysées

Palais Galliera
Museum of the fashion with until, August 23rd, 2015, the exhibition dedicated to Jeanne Lanvin

The Eiffel tower - We are at the "Palais de Chaillot"!

The Alexandre III bridge with in the back the statue symbolizing the France of the Renaissance. At the top  of the pylon, one of the four Fames: The Fame of the War. 
These four statues were covered with gold leaves in 1989.

The Bridge of the Arts and in the back, the "Galerie du bord de l'eau" of the Louvre - The "Pont des Arts", known these last years for all the padlocks which where put there by the loving tourists, is at present protected by wooden panels. These panels covered by graffitis spoil a little the beauty of the place. It should be temporary.

The Palais Royal and its famous Columns of Buren ("Les deux plateaux"). The "Théâtre Ephémère" (short-lived theater) now disappeared. This wooden theater had welcomed temporarily the troop of the "Comédie Française" during the works of the "Palais Royal". We can see again the garden of the "Palais Royal" through the columns.
The Garden of the Tuileries - Our shadows are still very long!

Merci Rachel ! 
We wish you a great London Marathon!

The route of the tour:

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