Paris seems to be making a sleepy start to the year,weighed down by over-eating at Christmas followed by endless slices of the galette des rois in January.Expect calories to be burned off though this weekend at the sales, the twice-yearly battle for bargains!
The winter and summer sales are very strictly controlled in France, with official start and end dates that all shops must respect. The winter sales began this Wednesday and will continue until February 14th (how romantic...), but you can expect most bargains to be gone after this weekend. To profit from this period, most major shops and shopping areas will be open all weekend, Sunday included.
Damien Hirst - the complete spot paintings
Artist/businessman Damien Hirst launched this Thursday an exhibition of his spot paintings simultaneously in the eleven Gagosian galleries around the world, one of which is in Paris. If you can prove that you have visited all eleven shows, you may even win a spot painting of your own!
Continuing on a business theme, concept store Colette will be selling official spotty merchandising including t-shirts, dresses, mugs and even iron-on spots!
Until February 18th, Gagosian Gallery, 4 rue de Ponthieu 75008
Colette, 213 Rue Saint-Honoré, 75001
Ahoy, an Island!
Staying on a British theme, and in the same arrondissement, eleven young British artists have been grouped together in one exhibition to show the possibilities of an island.
Au loin, une île !
Until February 11th
Fondation d’entreprise Ricard, 12 rue Boissy d'Anglas, 75008
Cartexpo - postcards from another age
Claiming to be the largest vintage postcard show in Paris, Cartexpo brings together hundreds of postcard dealers under the same roof. An excellent opportunity to find interesting and unusual snaps of Paris and other places around the world.
Friday 13th and Saturday 14th January
Espace Champerret, 6 rue Jean Ostreicher,75017 (M° Porte de Champerret)
Half price tickets available if you download this form: http://www.cartexpo.fr/c58_demi_tarif.pdf
Eating and Sleeping
Jules et Jim
Jules et Jim is the name of Truffaut's classic film, but also now the name of the hippest new hotel in Paris. Centrally placed in the rising 3rd arrondissement, it has been much spoken about - and much delayed - but is now open for business. I'm not sure if you will find Catherine at the hotel, but you will find a bar which is open to everybody, including at breakfast time.
Le Camion qui Fume
Marketing itself as Paris's first gourmet food truck (does this mean the burger vans near the Parc des Princes on match days don't count?), Le Camion qui Fume has managed to convert Parisians in little over one month to become consumers of hamburgers on street corners.
That said, according to all reports these are particularly good burgers, using freshly sourced ingredients, which has got people looking online to see where the van will be parked up each day. If you are in either of the places below this weekend you will probably be tempted to give it a go, but note that at the Point Ephemere in particular, people have reported a one-hour wait to order, then a further hour before getting the food!
Porte Maillot, 11am - 2.15pm
Point Ephemere, 7pm - 10.30pm