10 Best Things to do During Paris Photo

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On 10–11 November, Sotheby's Paris will offer two exceptional auctions of Photographs; from iconic images by Henri Cartier-Bresson and William Eggleston, to exciting new contemporary work by Eric Poitevin and Ethan Levitas. November 2016 also marks the 20th anniversary of Paris Photo, the most important international art fair dedicated to the photographic medium. This week, Sotheby's Photographs specialist Anais Feyeux travels from New York to her native Paris to share her top picks from the fair and exhibitions across the city.    

Photographs
10–11 November | Paris

10 Best Things to do During Paris Photo

  • Icons of Modern Art, The Shchukin Collection, Fondation Louis Vuitton, 22 October 2016–20 February 2017.
    This is the first time that these 127 masterpieces are on view together since this former private Russian collection was nationalized in 1918 and split between the Pushkin Museum in Moscow and the Hermitage in Saint-Petersburg. It includes masterworks by Monet, Gauguin, Picasso, Matisse, Rodchenko, and Malevich – to name but a few.



    Visit

  • Maurizio Cattelan, Not Afraid of Love, La Monnaie de Paris, 21 October 2016–8 January 2017.
    This promises to be the most significant exhibition of Cattelan's work in Europe, and the largest one since his retrospective at the Guggenheim in New York in 2011. I love the idea of having his work displayed not in a sleek contemporary art space but in the 18th century salons of the Monnaie de Paris, the oldest company in the world created in 864. Go and see how Cattelan's irreverent art fits in this traditional space. 



    Visit

  • The Color Line – African-American Artists and Segregation, Musée du quai Branly, 4 October 2016–15 January 2017.
    This powerful exhibition explores the role art plays in the quest for equality and the affirmation of black identity in segregated America. Through literature, cinema, music, and visual arts, this show offers a reevaluation of the importance of the African-American artists in American art, with well-known examples by Archibald Motley, Jacob Lawrence, and Billie Holliday. 



    Visit

  • The Spectacular Second Empire, 1852-1870, Musée d'Orsay, 27 September 2016–15 January 2017.
    The two decades of the French Second Empire was a time of splendor and of economic euphoria. It was also ''a period of moral and aesthetic crisis, torn between the old cultural frameworks and the new practices, between increasingly excessive decoration and the quest for the real.'' Haussmann renovated the old medieval Paris to the modern city we know. It was a time of artistic exploration when Manet exhibited Le Dejeuner sur l'herbe in 1863 and a great moment for photography. Gustave Le Gray, first a successful portrait painter, became the official photographer of Napoleon III. 



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  • Provoke, Between Protest and Performance – Photography in Japan 1960–1975, Le Bal, 14 September–11 December 2016.
    This is the first exhibition dedicated to the famous but short-lived Japanese magazine.  The images illustrated in its pages were rough, grainy and blurred, and most of the photographers were politically engaged.  Nobuyoshi Araki, the well-known contemporary Japanese photographer, has said that the effect of Provoke was 'like a bomb'.



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  • Roger Tallon, Le Design en Mouvement, Musée des Arts décoratifs, 8 September 2016–8 January 2017.
    This exhibition about the French designer Roger Tallon is sure to be incredible look back over his career. Tallon is responsible for so many iconic objects of everyday life; from watches, to televisions, stairs, cameras, ski-shoes, and even the French high-speed train. 



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  • Kollektsia! Contemporary Art in the USSR and Russia 1950–2000. Un Don Majeur, Centre Georges Pompidou, 14 September 2016–27 March 2017.
    This exhibition shines a light on the visual arts made in the USSR and Russia since the 1950s. Art from this region made after the Second World War is often overlooked in Western art museums, so I am pleased to see a broadening of cultural interests in shows such as this one.



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  • Mexique 1900–1950, Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, José Clemente Orozco et les avant-gardes, Grand Palais, Galeries Nationales, 5 October 2016–23 January 2017.
    This show at the Grand Palais, so close to the Paris Photo fair, traces a vast panorama of Mexican modern art – from the Revolution to the middle of the 20th Century. We know the famous coupling of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo so well; however, this exhibition reminds us that Mexico was a country to which many European artists and intellectuals fled, creating a hotbed of creativity. 



    Visit

  • American Painting in the 1930s, Musée de l'Orangerie, 12 October 2016–30 January 2017.
    Even though I now live in New York and have easy access to some of these paintings, I am excited to see this show about American painting from the 1930s.  The subtitle of this exhibition is The Age of Anxiety, as most of this art was made just after the 1929 crash when the country faced the consequences of the Great Depression. 



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  • Les Temps Mérovingiens, Musée de Cluny, 26 October 2016–13 February 2017.
    This show takes place in a hidden but incredibly beautiful exhibition space in Paris: the Gallo-Roman thermal baths. The exhibition explores the rich artistic and intellectual activity of the early Middle-Ages from 451 to 751 C. E., as old and new cultures collided.



    Visit

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