When in Paris, Do Morocco

photo: moorish arch, concorde

Almost 'Tales of the Alhambra' parked beside the Obelisk.

Plus Egypt and the 'Monde Arabe' As Well

Paris:- Saturday, 10. April 1999:- One evening a couple of days ago, TV-news decided to show me workmen constructing a moorish arch in the Place de la Concorde. This didn't seem too odd, in light to the recent installation of Ousmane Sow's 'Battle of the Little Big Horn' on the Pont des Arts - mentioned below.

I stored this information away to save it for a photo opportunity, and somehow my brain 'translated' moorish arch into something or other Egyptian. TV-news is a bit unreliable these days - sometimes seeming to be a PR show for NATO - so I guess there was something 'Egyptian' as well, but I don't remember.

The arch, which is not mentioned in any newspapersphoto: detail of arch I have, does have something to do with 'Maroc - les Trésors du Royaume' which is an exhibition about to begin, on Thursday, 15. April.

More than 400 works will be on display - from Morocco's long prehistory to the Islamic period. A final part of the exhibition will deal with European painters who worked in Morocco in the late 19th century, such as Matisse and Dufy.

'Le Temps du Maroc' - from 15. April until 18. July - can be visited at the Petit Palais, Avenue du Winston Churchill, Paris 8. Métro: Champs-Elysées Clemenceau. Except Monday, open from 10:00 to 17:40; to 20:00 on Thursdays. Catalogue available. Info. Tel.: 01 42 65 12 73.

L'Art Egyptien au Temps des Pyramides - is probably what stuck in my subconscious. By total coincidence, this exhibition which started last week is across the street from Morocco in the Petit Palais, at the Grand Palais.

Paris exists in a fever of Egyptomania so it is easy to confuse everything from North Africa, although Morocco is about as far from Egypt as it is possible to get in style. Also, while Morocco has its prehistory part, this is the only concern with the Egyptian exhibition, which focuses on the time of the pyramids - from 2700 to 2100 BC.. This is one of the 'big shows' and exhibits have been borrowed from the Louvre, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Royal Ontario Museum.

L'Art Egyptien - at the Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais, Square Jean Perrin, Paris 8. Champs-Elysées Clemenceau. Closed on Tuesdays, otherwise reservations are required for visits from 10:00 to 13:00 - no reservations required from 13:00 to 20:00; 22:00 on Wednesdays. Entry: 56 francs with reservations, 50 francs without. Catalogue available. Info. Tel.: 01 44 13 17 17.

L'Autre Rive - is the current exhibition at thephoto: musee du monde arabe Institut du Monde Arabe, which I visited for the first time last week. This exhibition focuses on Lebanon and its '12 civilizations,' from the time of the Phoenicians - about 3000 BC - up to the time of the Ottoman Empire in the 15th century. Until Friday, 30. April. Open daily except Monday, from 10:00 to 18:00; on Saturday until 20:00. Entry: 45 francs, with tickets at the Institut or at fnac outlets.

Institut du Monde Arabe, 1. Rue des Fosses-Saint-Bernard, Paris 5. Métro: Jussieu, Sully-Morland or Cardinal-Lemoine. Also in courtyard: under a tent-top, an Arabian souk and a Lebanese restaurant. Access for the handicapped. Info. Tel.: 01 40 51 38 38.

David Hockey - Dialogue avec Picasso - is a small exhibition I should have mentioned earlier, as it has been running for a long time at the Musée Picasso. The good news is that the 20-odd works on display will be around until Monday, 3. May. Musée Picasso, 5. Rue Thorigny, Paris 4. Métro: Filles du Calvaire or Saint-Paul. Except Tuesdays, from 9:30 to 18:00. Info. Tel.: 01 42 71 25 21. See below for David Hockney's 'Espace / Paysage' at Beaubourg.

Around the Death of Richard, the Lion-Heart - is actually about the original document for the peace treaty between Richard the Lion-Heart andphoto: richard the lion heart Philippe Auguste, concluded at Louviers on 15. January 1196. The exhibition also includes related documents and other graphic souvenirs.

At the Archives Nationales, Musée de l'Histoire de France, Hôtel de Soubise, 60. Rue des Francs-Bourgeois, Paris 3. Métro: Rambuteau. Closed Tuesdays; open Monday to Friday, from 12:00 to 17:45; and weekends from 13:45 to 17:45. Until Monday, 31. May. Entry: 20 francs. Info. Tel.: 01 40 27 62 18.

Musicora and MusicMania - for its 15th edition, this salon gives the visitor a chance to see France's production of musical instruments as well as hear a lot of musicians trying them out.

'MusicMania' is a parallel exhibition featuring today's sounds and Paris' own musical activities. In addition to showing instruments, music is performed in a variety of concerts, from Offenbach to classical, from jazz to children's choirs.

Musicora and MusicMania, at the Grand Halle de la Villette, Porte de Pantin, Paris 19. Métro: Porte de Pantin. Until Tuesday, 13. April. One entry is good for both salons. The Friday is reserved for professionals at both salons. Public hours are from 10:00 to 19:30; until 18:00 on 13. April.

Part of Musicora takes place at the nearby Cité de la Musique. Info. Tel. for Musicora: 01 49 53 27 00. Info at the Web site for MusicMania.

The above are new or coming events. Below are events already mentioned in this column; minus the ones that have left the scene. Also below, are some of this week's new posters and other images so take a skim anyway.

Little Big Horn On the Pont des Arts - 11 near-full-size horses and 28 people are African sculptor Ousmane Sow's representation of the principal actors of the Battle of the Little Big Horn.

The Pont des Arts makes a good gallery; there is a lot of light, except at night. The bridge is a good open-air hang-out spot, and Ousmane Sow's sculptures make it very lively - his figures are very dynamic and strong.

This outdoor show is not only free, but you get to cross the Seine at the same time. The official opening day for the public was on Saturday, and the figures will remain in place until Thursday, 20. May. If you are in Paris, don't miss it.

La Poste is getting ready for its Philexfrance 99 exhibition in July with a three-stampphoto: le poste: 'art' block, named 'Chefs-d'oeuvre de l'Art.' This block features the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo and Delacroix' La Liberté, on a sheet with the Chatte de Bastet. The face price of 50 francs also includes a pass to the exhibition.

'La Poste's' services for philatelists are accessible by the Web to interested collectors. La Poste offers information about its subscription service in English, German, Spanish and Italian, in addition to French. La Poste also accepts payments made with Visa or Mastercard.

Jean Racine 1699-1999 - gets a big remembrance in the Yvelines department this spring, with theatre, conferences, tours, an exhibition and concerts being staged. For details of the full program, try the Web site for the Ile-de-France, which is not the same as the one mentioned in earlier issues.

In addition to the city of Paris, the Ile-de-France is composed of seven other departments. Yvelines gets mentioned a lot because of Versailles and Saint Germain-en-Laye, but the biggest department, Seine-et-Marne gets mentioned only seldom, even though it is the location of our local Disneyland. Check out the Web site for details.

La Légende de Saint Julien l'Hospitalier - by Gustave Flaubert is a play, originally titled, 'Trois Contes.' Directed by Christian Rist. At the Théâtre de l'Aquarium, at the Cartoucherie in the Parc Floral in the Bois de Vincennes. From the métro, there is a shuttle bus. Until 18. April, Tuesday to Saturday at 20:30 and on Sundays at 16:00. Resa Tel.: 01 43 74 99 61, or tickets at fnac outlets.

Molière et Lully - has two alternate titles of 'Le Sicilien' or 'L'Amour Peintre' and it is put on by the Théâtre de l'Impossible under the direction of Robert Bensimon. What might be giddy performances, are on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, at 18:00; until Sunday, 17. April. This takes places at the Théâtre Mouffetard, 73. Rue Mouffetard, Paris 5. Métro: Monge. Info. Tel.: 01 43 31 11 99.

Musée Française de la Photographie - is not in Paris but in Bièvres. There is a train line running through Bièvres, between Versailles-Chantiers and Massy-Palaiseau, but the museum is a good 1700 metres from the station.

But if you are brave enough to look this up on a map, then you are brave enough to go and see the exhibition of photos by Chrystèle Lerisse, which starts on Saturday and continues until 20. July. Although there will be 60 photos on view, all shot between 1995 and 1998, they will be presented in the format of the negative: six by six centimetres. If adventure is your game, the address is 78. Rue Paris, Bièvres. Info. Tel.: 01 69 35 16 50.

L'Age d'Or de la Céramique Chinoise - is a public exhibition of the private collection known as the Meiyintang Collection, and it features 99 selected pieces from the beginning of the Sui dynasty in 581 to the period of the Yuan dynasty, or about 1368.

Musée Cernuschi, 7. Avenue Vélasquez, Paris 8. Métro: Villiers. Open from 10:00 to 17:40 daily except Mondays; until 27. June. Info. Tel.: 01 45 63 50 75.

Le Béton à Paris - you might not think reinforced-cement would be particularly interesting, but you might not be a cement fan. 'Béton is on show now. I have no start or end date for this, but it is at the Pavillon de l'Arsenal, 21. Avenue Morland, Paris 4. Métro: Sully-Morland. Info. Tel.: 01 42 76 33 97.

The '10th Biennale de Danse' goes on in 20 towns with 50 performances, in the Val-de-Marne until Friday, 16. April. For the complete program, dates and locations, Info. Tel.: 01 46 86 70 70, or hit the Web site.

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