Slovenia Impressionists and a Secret Garden

Favorite PaintingIf you haven’t noticed yet, I enjoy Impressionism.  We often think of the French when we think of this cutting edge time period in art, but they were not the only ones getting in on the action.  The Petit Palais in Paris currently has an exhibition on Impressionists from Slovenia.  I’ve never heard of any of the artists’ names before, but the messages were clear in their paintings, and they would fit just as well in an exhibition with Monet, Renoir, or Manet.  The main picture is my favorite painting from the exhibition.  I will visit Slovenia next year along with other areas of Eastern Europe.  Now I will know some names to look for in the art museums.

I was on a mighty quest after visiting the exhibition to find a “Swiss Valley Garden.”  I’ve read about it from experts on hidden gardens in Paris, and they are right, it is hidden.  I’m not even sure if I actually found it or not.  I found a garden that followed a path down stairs to lush greenery all around.  There were maybe five of us in this garden and it is what I imagined I was looking for.  I’ll have to go back to make sure it is the right one after I do a little more research.

Marmottan and Marches

Eiffel Tower 2I took a trip to the west side of Paris for a little culture and market shopping.  My morning began at the Marmottan Monet Museum.  I hopped on the metro to La Muette and walked through a refreshing park to reach the museum.  The Marmottan houses several Monets along with other impressionists’ work and a variety of art.  The former townhouse is a remarkable setting for the bequeathed paintings.  If you can’t get enough of Monet’s water lilies, then you will love this place.  If you are short on time, I recommend the D’Orsay and Orangerie before visiting this museum.  I enjoyed the Monet’s and other Impressionists’ work more in those locations.  (Sorry, no pictures inside, so I can’t share the artwork with you).

After seeing the beautiful color and light of the impressionist style, I was ready to get outside and see some of my own.  I took a walk from the museum up to the Trocodero.  One of my favorite moments in Paris happens when you turn a corner and all of a sudden the Eiffel Tower is peaking through.  Sometimes you turn a corner and it screams at you because you are a lot closer than you realized.  I walked down through the Champ de Mars past the Ecole de Militaire to a market called Saxe-Breteuil.

The open air market has a variety of products, but I went to stock up on my produce.  After taking the cooking class last night, I am ready to do some cooking at home.  A lovely French woman helped me select the freshest foods.  She did not speak English, so we mumbled our way through figuring out what I wanted.  I was going to get peaches, but she said the nectarines were much sweeter.  She helped me select the perfect tomatoes and “bella” lettuce.  I grabbed some cherries that I will candy and put on ice cream, goat cheese, or maybe some pork…  I feel so adventurous!

At this point I was getting pretty hungry, so I walked up to Rue Cler for lunch.  This may be one of the best places to eat lunch simply for the abundance of people-watching opportunities.  It was finally time I ordered a croque monsieur, so I did.  I opted to save a little money and have my cafe and dessert at home.  What a beautiful day to get out and wander.