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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Picasso problemo!

Just had to share this one with you -

A French couple have come forward with 271 works by Pablo Picasso.

A retired French electrician and his wife have come forward with 271 undocumented, never-before-seen works by Pablo Picasso estimated to be worth at least 60 million euro ($A82.79 million), an administrator of the artist's estate said on Monday.  The electrician, who once worked for Picasso, and his wife for years squirreled away the staggering trove - which is believed to be authentic - inside a trunk in the garage of their home on the French Riviera.

The cache, dating from the artist's most creative period from 1900 to 1932, includes lithographs, portraits, watercolours, and sketches - plus nine Cubist collages said to be worth 40 million ($A55.2 million) alone, according to French daily Liberation, which first reported the discovery on Monday.

Pierre Le Guennec, a 71-year-old former electrician, and his wife showed many of the works to Picasso's son Claude and other estate administrators in Paris in September, seeking to have the works authenticated, Picasso Administration lawyer Jean-Jacques Neuer.  Shortly after that meeting, Neuer filed suit on behalf of Picasso's heirs for alleged illegal receipt of the works. Police investigators are looking into how Le Guennec and his wife, Danielle, came by the pictures.  "This was a gift," Danielle Le Guennec told The Associated Press by phone from their home in the town of Mouans-Sartoux, near the tourist Riviera hotspot of Antibes. "We aren't thieves. We didn't do anything wrong."  The works, which were kept in a trunk, didn't appear to be much to her untrained eye, she said: "But even if this was a little jot of the pencil, it did come from the master."

Claude Picasso, quoted in Liberation, noted that his father was known for his generosity - but that he always dedicated, dated and signed his gifts, as he knew that some recipients might try to sell the works one day.  "To give away such a large quantity, that's unheard-of. It doesn't hold water," Claude Picasso was quoted in Liberation as saying. "This was part of his life."

Danielle Le Guennec said the couple didn't intend to sell the art. She also said the couple decided to come forward with the works this year because they were getting on in years, and "didn't want to leave any headaches to our children" with their own estate.

Aren’t these comments at odds with one another? You decide …

Also, I love the idea of these two "squirreling" away the artworks for years.  They knew they were on a good wicket ... !

Credits to NineMSN journalist Jamey Keaten for the story.  View the full story here.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It's beginning to look a lot like ...

The official lighting ceremony of holiday decorations along the famous Avenue des Champs-Élysées in Paris took place on the evening of 22 November.   The Avenue is now awash with Christmas lights and flashing LED lights have been hung on the trees to create a "snowflake" effect.

French actress Mélanie Laurent (Inglorious Basterds) was this year's guest to illuminate the Champs-Elysées.  She was accompanied by Bertrand Delanoë, the Mayor of Paris.

So pretty!  (And, wish I was there ...)

Photos courtesy of

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Burberry Burger anyone?

Today, I stumbled across the wonderfully fresh blog “Eat Drink Chic”.  Although I am obviously a little behind the times with this blog caper, I just had to share with you her post of 29 January 2010 titled “McFancy”.

In her post, Amy Moss writes “Last year I was approached by The Cool Hunter to style some photos for a pitch to McDonald’s for an upmarket pop-up restaurant for fashion week.  The concept was to give McDonald’s food a complete makeover and re-brand the fast food giant with an aesthetic suitable for a 5 star restaurant.”  Read more about it here.

And the results …

Gucci fry, anyone? 

How fun!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Serge Bastarde - Brocanteur

Read this book! A hilarious account of the popular trading of French (and some not-so-French) antiques in France -

Serge Bastarde Ate My Baguette - On the Road in the Real Rural France

'I found Serge's advice mostly useful and it would have been churlish to have refused his invitation to accompany him on a trip out in the country to 'forage for hidden treasures'. If the truth be known, I secretly couldn't resist the novelty of passing time with a bloke called Serge Bastarde'.

"When ex-blues drummer John Dummer decamps to France to start up as an antiques dealer and live the simple life, he doesn't count on meeting Serge Bastarde. The lovable (if improbably named) rogue and brocanteur offers to teach John the tricks of the trade in return for his help in a series of breathtakingly unscrupulous schemes. As the pair trawl through antiques markets and old farmhouses looking for hidden treasure, they get into more than their fair share of scrapes: whether they're conning hearty lunches from unsuspecting old peasants, secretly manufacturing priceless collectibles or losing a Stradivarius to gypsies. A hilarious romp through the real rural France, filled with eccentric characters, high jinks and unlikely adventures."

Ironically, having just finished the book, I stumbled across the wonderful website "My French Country Brocante" which gives francophiles like me who live so far from France an opportunity to flex the credit card muscles and deck out their own little French Country Homes.

An expensive hobby yes, but so worth it! (I tend to say that phrase a lot in my posts ...!)

Monday, November 8, 2010


As you can probably glean from previous posts, I have a little obsession.

I am a little obsessed with the Eiffel Tower.

Particularly when it's sparkly.

It is only a little obsession.

Really (!)

Photos are my own.

Monday, November 1, 2010


OK, I know this is my second post in a row about alcohol, but hey, it appeals to the majority!

The team at Absolut Vodka Advertising must be congratulated.
Absolut advertisements have always caught my eye for their wit and ingenuity. Particularly appealing in the above sample is the Paris advert in the bottom right-hand corner!

Here’s a further sample –

However, Absolut not only must be congratulated for their 2-D advertisement efforts, but also for their 3-D. I have noticed many a limited edition bottle of Absolut in my time and am usually able to resist.

On the way home from my recent trip abroad, I was easily sucked in at the Duty Free counter by one of Absolut’s cunning advertising ploys. Being female, into bling and other fine things (aka “easy target”), I delighted in purchasing a bottle of bling bling Absolut (above). However, the fun really started once I got home – the gold “bottle” is actually casing around a standard bottle of Absolut, and trying to open same makes all of those physics lessons at school worthwhile.

Although not an exhaustive list, Absolut limited edition designs include:-





and currently on the shelf (well, in Australia anyway), Glimmer.

The best thing about these little beauties – the limited edition Absolut bottles do not exceed the price of the standard bottle. They’re just a bit more fancy.
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