Tag Archives: Paris

Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris – Part 3

In the final part of the visit to the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris, we’ll look at some of the more industral objects and end with a room setting.

There were some truly wonderful and historical objects in this museum, but the largest percentage of them were enclosed in glass cases for their protection since they are quite valuable and culturally significant to the history of French design. However, since the museum galleries are splendidly well lit, that made it practically impossible to take a picture without some sort of glare or reflection, so I’m sticking to a few last pictures of things that were not encased in glass.

I don’t often share pictures of industrial objects, but they do quite often make me say “Oooo!” out loud. And there’s something quite wonderful about the technology of the early to mid 20th Century that I find especially appealing. Here are two examples.

The first one is a 1910 airplane engine — the inside — the structural elements that hold that set of propellers in place as the power zooms through the engine. I just think it’s gorgeous.

 

Close-up sideview  of 1910 French designed airplane engine.

Close-up sideview of 1910 French designed airplane engine.


 

Then there’s this early sound system for a movie projection set up in a cinema. The French were pioneers in film technology and they were quite early adopters of this new form of entertainment.

 

An early movie theatre sound system.

An early movie theatre sound system.


 

Finally, we were surprised to see just how many schoolchildren, from primary school age through high school age, were in the museum on the weekday that we attended. The museum is a fantastic educational resource for these students to learn about the wonderful inventions through the ages that their fellow Frenchmen have been either involved in or directly responsible for.

 

Students at a lecture inside the newer wing of the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.

Students at a lecture inside the newer wing of the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.


 

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris – Part Two

In this second part of our visit to the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris, today we’ll take a peek at some of the LARGE items that are displayed within the converted medieval priory portion of this extraordinary museum.

Designed to mimic the shape of a bat’s wings, this very early airplane by Clement Ader was designed between 1893 and 1897. The very fragile piece of engineering is suspended from the rather ornate ceiling inside the stairwell.

 

Very early aeroplane (airplane) designed by Clement Ader between 1893-1897

Very early aeroplane (airplane) designed by Clement Ader between 1893-1897


 
Ornate staircase in the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.

Ornate staircase in the Musee des Arts et Metier in Paris.


 
The high vaulted ceilings and ornate arches of the old church create the most impressive of the exhibition spaces. It’s quite stunning to walk into this vast area and look up to see several vintage airplaces hanging from the ceiling. On the floor below are old steam engines in a variety of sizes.
 
Planes above, trains below, automobiles in tiered racks on the side.

Planes above, trains below, automobiles in tiered racks on the side.


 
On the side of the large chapel are several levels of metal platforms, reached by stairs, which contain a variety of vintage automobiles — all perched high above the ground floor below. It could be a bit of a challenge for anyone with vertigo!
 
Vintage cars on suspended racks high above the floor below.

Vintage cars on suspended racks high above the floor below.


 
A timeless glimpse into the past.

A timeless glimpse into the past.


 
Hope you have enjoyed a peek at this wonderful museum which should be on everyone’s ‘must see’ list when they visit Paris.

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris – Part One

 
One of the best days out we had in Paris was at the glorious Musee des Arts et Metier. This wonderful museum opened right at the end of the 18th Century in what had been an abandoned medieval priory — Saint Martin des Champs. The museum has been expanded, most notably with a more contemporary addition in the 1990s, but the elegant old priory contains some of the most beautiful of the displays under those ornate and vaulted ceilings.

 

Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris, France. Housed in a converted medieval priory, this is one of the landmark museums of Paris. Made famous by the novel The Da Vinci Code, it contains a Foucault pendulum.

Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris, France. Housed in a converted medieval priory, this is one of the landmark museums of Paris. Made famous by the novel The Da Vinci Code, it contains a Foucault pendulum.


 

One example of the treasures within is the room that houses a Foucault Pendulum. I know that the former purpose of the space was reverential, but it still maintains an air of ‘sacred space’ in that hushed room with the pendulum right in the center.

 

Foucault Pendulum beneath the vaulted ceilings of the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris.

Foucault Pendulum beneath the vaulted ceilings of the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris.


 

 

The Foucault Pendulum within the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris.

The Foucault Pendulum within the Musee des Arts et Metiers in Paris.


 

When we were there, I noted that the glass table which has the pendulum suspended above it and the glossy flooring all around it appeared to be quite contemporary. That was a bit of a surprise. But as I was doing the research for this article, the information that I discovered explained all of that.

In 2010, the cable that held the pendulum snapped, damaging it badly and shattering the ancient marble floor beneath it. So the more contemporary appearance is a result of the reconstruction in the museum.

All of the photos above are available in my ZENFOLIO PORTFOLIO You may find them in the Portfolio tab under FRANCE — then under PARIS.

Enjoy!

 

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Photo Of The Day: Seriously Important Yet Smile-Inducing Graphic

An example of a serious but smile-inducing graphic was the neon sign we saw in the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France that instructed wheelchair users what direction to proceed in if there was a fire in the museum. Mark said, “Not chariots of fire — wheelchairs of fire.” And in case anyone misinterprets that, he meant it in a wry and humour-filled manner — not a sarcastic or disrespectful manner.

 

Wheelchair and fire graphic showing evacuation route at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Inside The Pompidou Collections in Paris

As promised, here is a glimpse at some of the artwork within the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France. The collections are vast, so this is just a tiny snippet from a few galleries plus a few shots from a current special exhibition.

Any of the smaller versions of photographs will expand if you click on them and you will be able to see more detail.

The current special exhibit is devoted to the life and work of the artist and designer Eileen Gray. We have been admirers of her work for quite a long time and until we sold off all of our furniture in Australia prior to our 2-1/2 year round-the-world jaunt, we had one of those glass and chrome side tables that you see pictured in the museum shop photo.

 

The lines to purchase tickets at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

A photographic portrait of designer & artist Eileen Gray


 

Examples of the forward-thinking tables and chairs designed by Eileen Gray in the 1920s-1940s which are still relevant in today’s contemporary decor.


 

Curved leather divan designed by Eileen Gray in the 1920s


 

Authorized reproductions of Eileen Gray design pieces which are for sale in the shop at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

And here is a tiny selection of some items in the permanent collection inside the Pompidou.
 

A red metal man sculpture by Olivier Mourgue


 

Hanging neon sculpture at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

A selection of colourful paintings with sexual themes


 

A huge punched metal sculpture that practically fills a room inside the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

A very large hanging sculpture named Fruits de la Passion


 

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Pompidou Photo Essay — Part 2

Here we go with a continuation of the Pompidou photo essay!

Did you ever wonder what the inside of the Pompidou looked like? Or what all of those clear plastic tubes on the exterior of the structure were for? These photos should answer some of that.

 

The vast interior lobby of the Centre Pompidou


 

Walkway through one of the clear plastic tunnels at the Pompidou


 

Even the elevators between the exhibit floors go through the clear plastic tubes on the outside of the building!


 

 

View of the Parisian landscape from the VERY top of the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

Come back soon for MORE from the Pompidou including pieces of artwork inside!

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.

Perfectly Wonderful Pompidou

We simply adore Paris and from past experience I know that staying in just the right place makes all of the difference in how much you enjoy your visit. Our very small but simply wonderful apartment in the Marais which I had sourced from airbnb enhanced our brief citybreak in Paris on several levels. The neighbourhood was wonderful and a mere few blocks from our front door was the Centre Pompidou.

A few hours after our arrival in Paris, we strolled through a misty rain down the street at dusk and past the Pompidou. It is an astonishingly odd building and it continues to be controversial. Many people snicker at the exterior facade and the brightly coloured ‘plumbing pipes’ that look like nothing else in the neighbourhood. It grew on me!

 

Centre Pompidou at dusk


 

Close-up of Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

Then we walked around to an open plaza in back and took photos of the wonderful sculptural objects in the Stravinsky Fountain.

 

Stravinsky Fountain next to the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

Moving elements within the Stravinsky Fountain next to the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France


 

Next up — photos of the inside of this vast museum and some of the wonderful artwork in the collections.

COPYRIGHT
©Deborah Harmes and ©A Wanderful Life
Please respect the words and images on this page.
All rights reserved.