...Continued from page 1

The Photographer and His Model

'L'Art du Nu au XIXe Siècle' and 'Portraits, Singulier Pluriel' are two parallel exhibitions mounted by the departments of stamps and photographs of the Bibliothèque Nationale.

'L'Art du Nu au XIXe Siècle' is an exhibition of 350 - mostly expo photographer and model photographs - donated to the bibliothèque, from a time when the photography was not considered an form of art in itself. Most of the photos were used by illustrators and painters, for use as models for their work. At the time, a 'nude' was considered more or less equivalent to a view of the forest at Fontainbleau.

A reproduction from the BNF show of 'L'Art du Nu au XIXe Siècle'

Delacroix was the first big-time painter to use photographs for this purpose; and others either bought them 'ready-made' or commissioned them for their specific use. For big scenes, painters could divide a photo into squares, and transfer the elements within a square to a corresponding piece of canvas.

Around 1910 this practice began to wane - but at the same time scientists began to use photographs of humans for systematic studies of the body itself. Time-lapse photography was used to study body movements. In this way, photography distanced itself from painting and began to become an art form of its own.

'Portraits, Singulier Pluriel' [1980-1997] focuses on photographic portraits, with a selection from the work of 11 photographers. To figure out 'who we are' from photographs is no easy matter, and in many cases only auto-portraits come close. Portraits are a search for identities.

'Claude Ferrand, Photographies' is yet another BNF exhibition, featuring many photos taken for purposes of publicity. This is a separate show, on at the Galerie Colbert, 2. rue Vivienne, Paris 2 - until Saturday, 8. November.

The first two exhibitions mentioned above, can be found in the Exhibition Galleries at the new bibliothèque at Tolbiac.

From Tuesday, 14. October until Sunday, 18. January 1998. Open daily except Mondays, from 10:00 to 19:00; on Sundays from 12:00 to 18:00. Quai François Mauriac, Paris 13.
Entry: 35 francs, reduced 25 francs.
The art book publisher Hazan has produced a book for each of the Tolbiac exhibitions.

Maison de la Culture du Japon

Officially inaugurated in May of 1996, the Japanese Cultural centre only opened to the public this last 24. September. The brand-new, but sober building was 15 years in the planning and three years in construction.

The work of famous Japanese graphic artists can be seen in an exhibition entitled 'Le Siècle du Design' in the grand hall on the second floor; on until Sunday, 9. November. This will be followed, starting Saturday, 20. November, by a large collection of Raku ceramics, which are used for the tea ceremony.

Maison de la Culture du Japon
101 bis. Quai Branly, Paris 15.
Open Tuesday to Saturday, from 12:00 to 19:00.
Information tel.: 01 44 37 95 01.

Metropole One Year Ago

Issue 1.34 - 14. October 1996 featured the columns - Metropole Diary's 'Total Strikecount-down eiffel or Only Semi - Be Prepared' and 'Au Bistro' had - 'Time, Heavens, Fallout, Bikes and Hero.' The articles in the issue were 'Nifty 50 Year-Old Cars - From the 1946 Auto Salon in Paris' - 'Not for Urban Cowboys - Sub-Mini Vans and a Couple of Pickups at Auto Salon' and 'Save the Faubourgs! - Paris' Planning Department Signals Change in Thinking.' There were two 'Posters of the Week' and Ric's Cartoon of the Week rounded off the issue.

The Tour Eiffel Countdown to 2000:

Only 810 days left to go.

Regards, Ric
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