Monday, June 28, 2010

Market Scene Laurie Fox PESSEMIER Acrylic on canvas 24 x 15 inches 61 x 38 cm SOLD

Fisherman Dieppe Laurie Fox PESSEMIER Acrylic on wood 5.5 x 12 inches 14 x 30 cm

Pier Dieppe Laurie Fox PESSEMIER Acrylic on canvas 9.5 x 14 inches 23 x 34 cm

Ship Dieppe Laurie Fox PESSEMIER Acrylic on wood 20 x 5 inches 50 x 13 cm

Hanging out at the port Laurie Fox PESSEMIER Acrylic on canvas 14 x 9.5 inches 34 x 23 cm

“Please close door after entering,” the sign read. We stepped into a room where we could hear people talking and see at least one painting on the wall. Otherwise, it was a room full of smoke. One could barely see the person one entered with. I was immediately reminded of a Sherlock Holmes episode: obscured.

Another building, from medieval times, had several video installations: no screening room necessary as we stumbled down a dark, circular ramp. We saw sculptures and fresco, prints and paintings, performance art and videos. It was the final exhibit at the Paris school of Beaux Arts.

I can’t believe I’ve lived here this long and never gone there – it was a giant complex of classic buildings and spaces chock full of new ideas. It changed my attitude toward art.

We went because I hired a woman to help me translate some furniture descriptions into French. She is an architectural student at the school and suggested we visit. It was terrific!

It’s been a long hot week here in Paris – our sixth floor view apartment with seven windows has no air=conditioning and our window coverings are feeble. We spent a couple of days in Normandy, at Dieppe, on the beach and the harbor. It was breezy and beautiful: the three best days we’ve ever spent in Normandy.

Dieppe is a town which is part working and part touristique. We may have driven through there once before but never stayed. Harika walked free through the little town, situated on a spit of land in the English channel, facing the ocean beach, but also facing the port, where our hotel looked out. I painted from our hotel window, as well as out on the pier: fishermen and ships.

There were a multitude of restaurants – our first choice was closed, and our alternate choice served the best fish stew I’d ever eaten: in a sauce of langoustines and cream.

We drove our rental car to Treport (very touristy), St Valery-en-Caux, an exceptional fishing port full of boats and a stony beach we sunned on; and in-between Dieppe and le Havre a multitude of tucked-away beaches where we played and relaxed.

Our trip to Normandy changed my thoughts about tours: the best thing about travel is discovering new things: I found a yellow sweater with sewn on pearls, a new restaurant serving delicious fish; a whole new color for the sea. Harika discovered she could have fun off the leash. When things are planned it is difficult to discover. Naivete is paramount.

So it was with the art, as well. I realized not all art must be beautiful to be good. Some art just makes one think differently. It is a process of discovery, and applying that discovery to one’s own point of view.

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