Travel: Culture & Architecture

Paris: Looking Up, Part Two

Hôtel de Soubise, ceiling detail of the Prince's apartment on the ground floor.
Hôtel de Soubise, ceiling detail of the Prince’s apartment on the ground floor.

Ceilings of the eighteenth, nineteenth, and twentieth centuries. I’m a bit overdue with this second part. I had forgotten that I had created this as a draft way back in January when I posted the first portion of Paris ceilings. Well, the photographs had been corrected and uploaded, but the copy hadn’t been written. And all this time I was thinking I had days of work yet to do. So I procrastinated.

Travel: Culture & Architecture

Paris: Looking Up, Part One

A little chapel in the Cluny Museum, built at the height of the Gothic era, early 1500s.
A little chapel in the Cluny Museum, built at the height of the Gothic era, early 1500s.

Ceilings of the Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque styles. I spent most of my time in Paris piecing together its architectural history. Unfortunately a lot of the surviving mansions are now government institutions and are not open to the public, but if an architectural gem was open, the rooms were rarely in their original state. Historical interiors had either been stripped bare by the revolutions or heavily embellished during the Second Empire. By the way, I am no fan of that era’s design.

After three weeks of effort, I did manage to find, visit, and photograph some wonderful buildings. Usually if a room retained any of its original décor, it would be the ceiling. And the ceilings were amazing! All but one photo of this blog post were taken in the Louvre. I was only interested in its structural and décor history. Plus there was the newly renovated 18th-century Decorative Arts Galleries that had recently reopened. It took me a whole day to see the new galleries and another whole day to discover the building’s architectural history.

Travel: Culture & Architecture

Paris: The Small and Exquisite Moments

Detail of an unusual objet d’art in the ‪Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris
Detail of an unusual objet d’art in the ‪Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris

This is the first of a series of posts covering my trip to Paris, France. It’s been two months since I’ve returned, but I needed time to adjust being back. You see, after a month of wandering and living in an historical and cultural paradise, returning to my humdrum existence here in Dallas has been less than happy. I think now that enough time has passed, posting about my Parisian adventures will not trigger another case of the blues.

As you’re looking at the following images, keep in mind that most of these objects were inside glass displays and were all shot with my iPhone. I did take a camera with me and alternated between the two devices, but after one week of switching back and forth, I decided enough was enough. Besides, shooting with the iPhone was the only immediate way to upload images to my Instagram account.