Aix in Autumn

RRYesterday I went to Aix-en-Provence to see some awesome architecture.  Above, on the left, is Le Pavillon Noir by Rudy Ricciotti, the architect who also designed Marseille’s new MuCem.  The Pavillon is home to the Ballet Preljocaj.  On the right is the new conservatorie of Music and Dance by Kengo Kuma, which I like it because it looks like folded paper (and reminds me of a great book called Folding Architecture by Sophia Vyzoviti).KKThe historic centre or Vieil Aix, is predominantly 16th and 17th century.  On Saturdays it is entirely taken up which a huge array of market stalls…
Marche…Which at this time of year are full of colour…
BouquetsDecorativeHerbsAubergineAnd the produce is pumping!
SunflowersCourgeBletteAnother kind of bouquet – WindmillsSong of the Day: Donny Hathaway’s version of Jealous Guy

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Saint Tropez for the day

Masts2Yesterday Dan and I went to watch Les Voiles de Saint Tropez 2014, a regatta featuring classic yachts, Walleys and top end modern racers all in one place.
Masts MastsWe were here to visit a friend with a very special boat.  Manitou is a yacht with a fair few websites dedicated to her history – Mostly due to the fact she was once owned by JFK and the sunken bath tub in the aft cabin is said to have washed Marilyn Monroe. ManitouRegatta view from the beach – Beach viewWhile Mr Hope slept off lunch on the beach I explored Saint Tropez.  Below – The pinkest bourgonvilla I’ve ever seen (so pink it was practically glowing).   The locals preferred mode of transport.  A sign for my kitchen.  A confused address.  A basket for my shoes and a magical view.  NeonMotoDay and Night3 or 4BasketViewMy favourite couple of shops were La Pause-Douceur, a tiny store that sold everything from patisseries, nougat and macaroons to marzipan fruit!  Sweet tooth heaven!
Marizpan fruitAnd the bizarrely named Vintage Interiors in the old town that seemed to sell nothing but Chanel jewellery.  If I had a spare 3000 euro I would totally wear these pearly hearts.ChanelIt started to cloud over as the boats came back into port…Clouding overbut it was still nice to watch them all come in. sky leg over groupies

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Colour, Light, Shape and Space

colours doublePhotos from yesterdays visit to la Cite Radieuse and Daniel Buren’s current exposition ‘Defini, Fini, Infini‘.mirrored light sideDetails -reflectioncloseup cornerBright lights -walllooking backAnd a few of the building itself because I love it so much -plantingstaircase concrete

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Sur le Pont

FerrisA few photos from my recent wander around Avignon, including the By Appointment only antique dealer with some jumbo baskets (and lovely window raffia blinds on the stories above).  I would have bought every one of Nathalie du Pasquier’s acid print cushions but at 90 euros each I decided to try and get my hands on some African textiles next time I’m on London’s Goldhawk Road and make something similar.   IMG_7033IMG_7032IMG_7034Love the pinkness, this cute toy shop window display and the boarder of waves.  Happy menWavesEnjoying a moment away from the heat and burning midday sun in the church on Rue Sainte Agricol.
domelightI also went to the newly re housed Collection Lambert.  Now temporarily installed in the former Prison Sainte-Anne behind the Papal Palace. WhoAbove: Who do you think you are? Barbara Kruger.  Below: Musee du Louvre Paris, Candida Hofer.  Great ice cream walls too!
Candida HoferBelow: J’ai reve d’un autre monde, Claude Leveque
IMG_6909Double doors -Double doors

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The Med

Sunday was 31 degrees in the shade so I went to see the sea.SwimmerBeach barSormiou is part of the Calanques (limestone inlets along the French coast that look like fingers) and only 15 minutes bus ride from the centre of Marseille.  It might not be St Tropez but with estimated population of 85,5000 I expected one of Marseille’s closest stretches of water to be a whole lot busier.Mini HarbourBoat boyI have only ever visited the Calanques from the Cassis end, where you have to walk through Cassis to reach them and the whole experience is one high end South of France harbour money stripping extravaganza – wine, sea food, ice cream, postcards, maps and crap sea side shell art.  Sormiou is amazing because you have to park in some grotty Marseille suburb with boarded up houses and yet within 10 minutes hiking the view looks like this -High pointFirst viewThere is a road in, but it looks like a Top Gear test track and apparently takes about an hour.  There are roughly 24 Calanques reaching 20km from the south west tip of Marseille, along the bottom bit of French coast to Cassis.  Clarkson-esque

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Patterns and Light

A few photos from my recent 24 hours in the UK! London for a cultural walk around (exhibition of the trip is definitely ‘Dennis Hopper: The Lost Album’ at the RA) and Hampshire for a friends wedding on her beautiful Chamomile farm.

















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Tour de France 2014

20140721-084354-31434093.jpgYesterday the Tour de France came through our part of the world… And came down the stretch of road we use nearly everyday. Despite being the middle of July the weather was hideous and I spent four hours waiting road side under a black cloud.

20140721-084713-31633456.jpgI managed to grab a fair amount of swag/tat from the caravan (promotional vehicles) as they passed through on way to Nimes. The best being a bag of Madelines, the most random being some washing powder and a shopping bag printed up to look like a bag of oven chips.

20140721-084953-31793298.jpgStage 15 saw the Tour ride from Tallard to Nimes, a total of 222km. There were two breakaway riders who passed us about 6minutes before the peloton.

20140721-085520-32120176.jpgThe breakout pair were eventually caught 50metres from the finishing line! The peloton zipped by in approximately 45seconds, nearly knocking me off my feet. Worth it to see all those lovely legs though!





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