Paris et les grandes vues

April 9, 2011

From the top of the Pompidou Centre looking north over the grey roofs, the Sacré-Cœur stands aloof. Magnificent scale! Strangely,  Notre – Dame can appear dwarfed within the current city skyline . . .that’s why I admire Wren so much – the scale of St Paul’s is breathtaking. But, back to Montmartre,  I was amazed to see the brow of the hill so pronounced with nothing visible beyond. Mmm, can’t wait to get back and view down the other side of the mont away from the centre.  In an image from the web, from Montmartre looking south with lovely scudding clouds.

A thin cloudy sky spread over the city last Monday. Here looking due east to la Defense, the Bourse de Commerce sits  like a rhum baba with the elegant upward mass of Saint Eustache maintaining its clarity of form thrusting skywards.

And a glimpse of Eiffel’s tower – excellent foresight on the appropriate scale for a monument again.

One of Callot‘s Grandes Vues of the Louvres.

Down below in Place Igor Stravinsky, bits of Piano and the floating sculptures of Niki de Saint Phalle + Tinguely. Bright spots of colour in a user-friendly city space – playful and attractive – parties of school kids stopping off and many desire lines thread easily through this square. There’s room for all including musicians.

You cannot speak for no one knows

Your language. You must try to catch

By glances or by steadfast gaze

The attitude of those you watch.

No conversations can amaze:

Noises may find you but not speech.

Now you have circled silence, stare

With all the subtlety of sight.

Noise may trap ears but eye discerns

How someone on his elbow turns

And in the moon’s long exile here

Touches another in the night.  Elizabeth Jennings. In a Foreign City

2 Responses to “Paris et les grandes vues”

  1. Cloudier Says:

    Spectacular photos of higgledy-piggledy rooftops. St Paul’s is my favourite London building.

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