Worth waiting for …

If it’s Friday, it must be France …

Yes, I know it’s Sunday and this post is a bit late. Désolée!

We dashed off for a few days to visit the Gulf side, play some tennis and bridge and relax in the warm and hilarious company of dear friends. I have to admit it was good to break my obsessive and all-consuming writing routine. Please forgive my tardiness but I think you will agree this post was worth waiting for.

logo-01As you know, Bonjour Paris is one of my favourite websites and the following article by Ashlee Girdner from the most recent edition took my breath away.  I was SO excited to see it there! Don’t you love those kind of surprises?

The man known as Brassai, arrived in Paris from Hungary in 1924 and began to associate with the avant-garde artist community, in particular with Picasso and the Parisian surrealist circles. His proclivity to work at night produces a combination of unique authenticity and surrealism. I treasure his book Paris By Night, which can be found here on Amazon.

Brassai - Photo from Wikipedia
Brassai – Photo from Wikipedia

A multi-talented artist he was truly a pioneer in the art of candid photography.

Even if you are not a photography buff I think you will appreciate the reminder of the times evoked here. I hope so. Here’s how this beautifully-written article begins. Enjoy!

Brassai: Capturing the Beautiful Underbelly of Paris
By Ashlee Girdner
There is a jovial group of youths sitting in the shadows of an ambiguous dance hall. Their expressions show the serenity that only absinthe and rich French wine can provide.

There are dark, mist-filled streets that only the seediest creatures of the world could populate. The whores of Pigalle lurk, like deep-sea creatures with luminescent lures to attract prey on the streets of Paris.

Pablo Picasso creeps like a cat along the walls of his studio, studying his newest sculptures with his calloused hands.

The cafes of Montparnasse in the 30’s are crowded with the highest creative minds of the 20th century. Full of ambition and hunger, men like Jean Cocteau and Ernest Hemingway write opuses and operas. There to capture every sparkling, surreal moment is a heavy browed man, stalking about the filthy rooms. This man is Gyula Halasz, otherwise known as Brassai.

To read the rest of the excellent article about this masterful artist, please click here. You’ll be very glad you did!

5186e3jVcYL._SX240_How about you? Are you familiar with Brassai’s work? Do you share a fascination for Les Années Folles, as I do? Do you find his subject matter too gritty at times? Do we need to see all sides of life captured forever on film?

Published by patriciasands

Patricia Sands lives in Toronto, Canada when she isn't somewhere else, particularly the south of France. With a happily blended family of seven adult children and, at last count, six grandchildren, life is full and time is short. Beginning with her first Kodak Brownie camera at the age of six, she has told stories all of her life through photography. Much to her surprise a few years ago, she began to write and has now published three novels, including two that are part of a six-book series set in the south of France. Love France? Love her work! Check out her website www.patriciasandsauthor.com She is particularly drawn to the rewarding friendships of women and the challenges many embrace once their families are grown. "It's never too late to begin something new," she enthuses. "As the saying goes, just do it!"

19 thoughts on “Worth waiting for …

    1. Just as we do with our writing, the good and the bad must be addressed and sometimes we find beauty where we least expect it. You’re right Kelly, there is a place for it.

  1. Oooh, I got chills! It’s like I was there with Pablo, creeping along the walls, and drinking absinthe with the young of Paris. I’ll have to check out Brassai’s book. I love the underbelly of any city, but especially one as beautiful as Paris. I need to go back…

  2. Yes, I am familiar with Brassaï’s work. My boss is also a photographer of Hungarian descent who is a huge fan of his work as well as that of his contemporary, André Kertész. One year for Xmas I gave her a book of photos by Kertész called “On Reading”. As its title implies, the topic is images centered on the theme of reading. It’s a lovely little book. Here’s the link on Amazon if you want to check it out. Unfortunately, they don’t show what’s inside, but the cover gives you a clue:

  3. Thank you for shaing about this artist. I love Paris and have been there a few times. It is such a beautiful place, but does have areas that are dirty. It is like life. YOU take the good with the bad. Alesia

  4. Thanks for the introduction, I haven’t heard about him yet, but am sure he must be between the pages of some of those stories written in that era. It was fun reading about Charles Ephrussi the art collector, who hung out with Proust and a few others, oh to have been a fly on the wall in those days of the salons!

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