The 2018 season of the Marrakech International Film Festival covers unparalleled quantity of Moroccan movies, such as seven movies in the latest Morocco Panorama sidebar, as well as a homage to Moroccan artist and director Jillali Ferhati.
At the point when this annual event started in 2001, the film industry of Morocco was in a moderately delicate condition, and part of the festival’s key objectives was to strengthen the cinema business, which presently is reaping its rewards.
Over the latest years, Moroccan film has delighted in huge well-known accomplishment in the local setting and furthermore rising worldwide recognition, as appeared by the way that few of the movies playing in the Morocco Panorama had film screenings at festivals, for example, Cannes, Berlin, and Venice.
Resident film producers incorporate both amazing men and women directors, as seen in the Morocco Panorama.
Christoph Terhechte, the festival’s art director, expressed that foreign visitors will find the top of the latest Moroccan film and film viewings will likewise draw in significant Moroccan audience. Given the understanding of past festival seasons, showings of the Moroccan movies are guaranteed to drive crowds.
Meryem Benm’barek’s first movie entitled, “Sofia” is a ground-breaking anecdote concerning a 20 year old middle-class young lady who is compelled to wed the common laborer’s dad of her infant, who she barely knows, to abstain from going to imprison. The feature film obtained the best screenplay honor and got overwhelming applause in its film viewing in Un Certain Regard in Cannes.
“Jahiliya,” which recently screened in Cannes, Berlin, and Cairo, serves as the last and darkest piece of Hicham Lasri on his “hound trilogy,” established in 1996 at the season of the dissolution in Morocco of Eid el-Adha that was generally observed with the butcher of sheep.
Lasri has a place with the new age of Moroccan movie producers. He accomplished worldwide eminence with his unmistakable, monochrome movie, “The End,” that was screened in 2012 at the Cannes Film Festival’s ACID segment. His movies dive into disputable subjects identified with Morocco’s ongoing political past.
Shown this 2018 in Berlin, Narjiss Nejjar’s “Stateless,” presents a young lady who was in 1975 ousted from Algeria and turned into a stateless resident. She is set up to wed a maturing, visionless man, with the end goal to acquire Moroccan citizenship and along these lines have the capacity to reunite with her mom, who is still living in Algeria.
Nejjar among the prime female movie producers in Morocco and her past movies consist of “Wake Up Morocco”, and “The Rif Lover.” She also co-directed the “Angels’ Terminal” released in 2008.
Faouzi Bensaidi’s Venice player “Volubilis” is taken in Meknes, the place where he grew up and delve into the gigantic gap among Morocco’s poos and rich people. Bensaidi’s past films are “Death of Sale” (2011), which earned the CICAE grant at the Berlinale.
The narrative “We Could Be Heroes,” directed by Hind Bensari, shows the life of an Azzedine Nouiri, a wheelchair athlete as he readies for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. The movie was awarded the Jury Prize at the Hot Docs Film Fest. Her former group financed documentary “475: Break the Silence” was a significant success on the web in 2014.
The third movie feature of director Yassine Marco Marroccu, entitled “Catharsys, or The Afina Tales of the Lost World,” tackles a radio program, “Morning Dark Show,”hi-tech oppressed world, under the strain of a worldwide famine.
“The Healer,” the 5th film of Mohamed Zineddaine, revolves on the life of Abdou, a teenage kid, living in a mining village in Morocco, would like to widen his reality by figuring out how to read and write.
Among the initial Moroccan directors to accomplish significant global recognition is Ferhati, who gets a lifelong tribute at the event. His movies utilize a social pragmatist style to give a knowledge into modern Morocco.
Ferhati’s ongoing features are the 2004 “Suspended Memory” which was awarded at the Cairo Film Festival for best screenplay, the 2010 film entitled “At Dawn which earned him the best screenwriter award at the Dubai Film Fest, and “Pillow Secrets” released in which was presented as the best screenplay and best picture at the Moroccan Nat’l Film Fest. The director’s latest film this 2018 is entitled “The Ultimate Rebellion.”
Aside from being a renowned director, Ferhati is a highly applauded on-screen actor, having played in his movies and numerous movies by other lead directors of Morocco.
Moroccan talent will likewise be going to the festival’s Atlas Workshops since the event fortifies its spot as a significant center point for both the international and Arab film industry.
American actor Robert De Niro on Saturday accepted a tribute award \from the hands of his close friend, highly acclaimed director Martin Scorcese.
The Marrakech International Film Festival, which launched Friday, keeps running until December 8, 2018.
Background: The Marrakech International Film Festival
The Marrakech International Film Festival usually runs in 4 days during the fall or winter of every year. It is famous for its reputation regarding cinematographic production which is equivalent to the Cannes film celebration in southern France. The Marrakech Film Festival was launched in 2001 and has since become the most prominent film fest in the Kingdom of Morocco. It is progressively picking up acknowledgment as an artistic expression
Aside from being a mainstream entertainment source, the movies presented at the Marrakech International Film Festival are utilized as a strong instrument to educated the general audience. Today, the film business is imperative to Morocco and standards for production are kept up at high-quality level.
Those who have attended the Marrakech Film Festival such as Adgeco Group’s Chairman and Founder Mohamed Dekkak, appreciate it since it has a more relaxed vibe. The International Film Festival of Marrakech has likewise assumed a significant responsibility in teaching the general population, both local and abroad, on present issues and situations in Morocco. It has brought matters to light about Moroccan culture and advances nature and historical sights in Morocco. The country’s emerging movie industry profits by the celebration and cooperation with movie producers from different nations. The celebration likewise advances Morocco’s flourishing travel industry.
With a buzzing market square filled with storytellers, artists, acrobats, and musically inclined people, the city of Marrakech have proved to be the ideal setting for the celebration. Previous festivals have been a resonating achievement, and organizers trust that future festivals will be significant all the more energizing. Gatherings of people from everywhere throughout the world are certain to be engaged by the celebration and captivated by the magnificence and mystery of Marrakech.
Mohamed Dekkak greeting His Majesty King Mohammed VI on the occasion of 18th anniversary of the enthronement of King Mohammed VI at Marchane Palace Tangier
Mohamed Dekkak greeting His Majesty King Mohammed VI on the occasion of 18th anniversary of the enthronement of King Mohammed VI at Marchane Palace Tangier
Under the patronage of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, the Council of the Moroccan Community Abroad (CCME), in collaboration with the Council of Israelite Communities of Morocco (CCIM), organizes for the first time, an assembly meeting on the theme ”Moroccan Judaism: for a shared Moroccanness”, held from 13th until 18th of November 2018 in the city of Marrakech.
According to a joint statement by Serge Berdugo, secretary general of the CCIM and Mr. Abdellah Boussouf, the secretary general of CCME. Beyond the nostalgia and the memory, the capacity to meet, execute a dialogue and to think together Morocco, we must strengthen what makes up our uniqueness. We must make Morocco a field of ambitions and not a mere conservatory of a common memory.
This meeting attended by Adgeco Group’s Chairman and Founder, Mohamed Dekkak, brings together 250 that belongs to a Jewish religion, Moroccans residing in Morocco and abroad, including civil society figures, teachers, academics, commentators, business leaders, journalists, and researchers. Moroccan people that aims to celebrate this Moroccan exception, and deepen the reflection on questions such as what does it mean in the twenty-first century to be Moroccan when one lives far from one’s native land?” How to preserve our specificity in our host countries? Or how can the Moroccan communities abroad assume a role of treaty-unit, propose for a consolidation of the relations between the country of origin and host country? The goal of this meeting is not to provide answers to these questions, but to prolong the reflection.
Two exhibitions are scheduled on the sidelines of this event: “Portraits of Moroccan Jews from the Atlas and Sahara” of Elias Harrus, organized by the Ministry of Culture and Communication and ” Rehabilitation of Moroccan Jewish Cultural Heritage: Synagogues and Cemeteries”, from Museum of Moroccan Judaism.
The latter exhibition covers around 50 photographs, which presents the rehabilitated memorial and cemeteries under the directives of King Mohammed VI to protect and conserve all religious sites including Morocco’s cemeteries and sanctuaries. This rehabilitation of Jewish cemeteries was launched in 2010 and is a clear evidence of the strong roots of the Jewish community in the geography and history and of Morocco.
The “Portraits of Moroccan Jews from the Atlas and Sahara” covers no less than thirty colored and black and white photographs. The collected pieces give visitors a trip back in time and explore further the everyday lifestyle of the Moroccan Jews from the Atlas and the South of the Kingdom. The photos give emphasis on the religious rites, crafts, culture and traditions of the Moroccan Jews.
These portraits are also a creative indication of the deep bond amongst the Muslim and the Jewish community, living in peace and harmony in this land of Islam with the most absolute respect of the other.
In addition to the exhibits, a documentary film entitled “Yahssra … Douk Lyam”, which was directed by Serge Berdugo and Marc Berdugo will also be screened.
This assembly is a joint collaboration of several institutions including the Judeo-Moroccan Heritage Foundation, Ministry of Culture and Communication, the Museum of Moroccan Judaism, the Alliance Universal Israelite and the Association of Friends of the Museum of Moroccan Judaism.
The Council of the Moroccan Community Abroad
CCME or the Council of the Moroccan community abroad was established in December 2007 to be in charge of monitoring and assessing Morocco’s public policies with regards to its nationals living abroad. The organization also oversees social and human rights issues in line with protecting the interests of Moroccans living abroad, to solidify their contribution to the country’s economic advancement and build friendly relations and cooperation between Morocco and the host country.
History of Essaouira
The greater part of the old town and forts in Essaouira today dates back from the eighteenth century, however, the village has a substantially more seasoned history that began with the Phoenicians. With a considerable length of time, foreign people had a firm hold over the town, and in spite of the fact that Moroccans, in the long run, recovered it, the remote impact waits on in the manner in which the town at present appears.
Sultan Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdallah in 1764 introduced him self in Essaouira (at that point known as Mogador) with the goal that his corsairs could dispatch assaults on the general population of Agadir, who were defying him. He employed Théodore Cornut, an architect from France, to make a city amidst sand and wind, where nothing had already existed. The mix of European and Moroccan styles satisfied the sultan, who renamed the town Essaouira, signifying “well-designed”. The port before long turned into an essential connection for exchange among Europe and Timbuktu. It was where the exchange of salt, gold, ivory and ostrich feather was precisely checked, charged and controlled by a battalion of two thousand state warriors.
The French had set up their territory in 1912 and changed the town’s name back to Mogador and occupied exchange to Tangier, Casablanca, and Agadir. It was just in 1956 with Moroccan freedom that the quiet backwater again moved toward becoming Essaouira. From the time Orson Welles recorded Othello here and hippies picked Essaouira as a town to hangout, the place has seen an enduring stream of guests – everybody from craftsmen, surfers, and essayists to European vacationers getting away from the hordes of Marrakesh.
The Medina of Essaouira
Essaouira is a remarkable case of a late 18th century fort village, constructed by the standards of modern European military design in a Northern African setting. From the time of its establishment, it’s been a noteworthy universal commercial seaport, connecting Morocco and its Saharan environs with Europe and whatever remains of the globe.
The Medina of Essaouira, previously called Mogador is derived from the word Migdol which means “small fortress” is an extraordinary case of a walled village of the mid-18th century, encompassed by a divider impacted by the Vauban model. Built by the standards of modern European military engineering, in a Northern Africa setting, in ideal blend with the statutes of Arab-Muslim design and town planning, Essaouira has assumed a noteworthy job throughout the hundreds of years as a global exchange seaport, connecting sub-Saharan Africa and Morocco with Europe and whatever remains of the globe.
The town is likewise a case of a multi-cultural hub as demonstrated by the co-existence, from its establishment of the different ethnic group, like the Arabs, Amazighs, Europeans and Africans and in addition multi-confessional (Christians, Muslims, and Jewish). Indissociable from the Medina, the archipelago of Mogador includes countless nature and cultural spots of Outstanding Universal Value. The generally late establishment in contrast with different medinas of Northern Africa was crafted by the Alaouite Sultan Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdallah who hoped to make this tiny Atlantic town an illustrious port and boss Moroccan business focus open to the outside world. Referred to for quite a while as the Port of Timbuktu, Essaouira wound up one of the significant Atlantic business hubs among Europe and Africa toward the latter part of the eighteenth century and amid the nineteenth century.
Essaouira is an exceptional and a well conserved case of a mid-eighteenth century fort coastal village, with a solid European impact rendered to a Northern African setting.
With the Kingdom of Morocco opening to the world toward the latter part of the seventeenth century, the Medina of Essaouira was spread out by a French planner who had been significantly affected by the creation of Vauban at Saint Malo, a military engineer. Generally, it has held its image of a European village.
Officially finished by the nineteenth century and unmistakably characterized by its defenses, the Medina of Essaouira has all the fundamental segments for its honesty. Involving an agreeable set relatively with nature components and high caliber cultural features, the village at present holds its trustworthiness and its unique particular style. In spite of its trustworthiness being marginally modified, prominently because of the corruption of structures in the Mellah locale, the level of harm does not trade off the essentialness of the area overall.
The condition of preservation of the Medina of Essaouira is progressively enhanced because of the endeavors of the local government and the watchfulness of officials responsible about its security and image.
The Medina of Essaouira, established amidst the eighteenth century, has generally preserved its authenticity in line with its origination and blueprint and also the materials (utilization of native stone manjour) and building techniques, and this regardless of some insufficient utilization of present day materials for fix and reproduction work. Despite the ocean swell and clamminess somewhere else, the strongholds and urban conservation, all in all, their first formation.
Security and administration essentials
Security measures basically identify with the distinctive laws for posting of notable landmarks and locales, and especially the Law 22-80 that concerns Morocco’s legacy. Responsibility for components that make up the historical village of Essaouira is separated between the district, the State, the Israelite Alliance, the Habous, private people and cooperatives. The 1988 urban arrangement No. 4001 accommodates a bumper zone around the said town inside which building is disallowed. Two critical security and administration measures are at present in the last phases of use.
The neighborhood populace, the government leaders and the acquainted zones are progressively mindful of the Outstanding Universal Value of the Medina. Formed to guarantee a superior control of the town’s overall and specifically, the medina is the Essaouira Urban Agency. In line with other parliamentary divisions and administrations, this Agency must plan and arrange endeavors and screen the implementation and usage of the continuous or arranged work sites. Dependent upon the foundation of an administration plan for the medina that must protect both the architectural legacy and enhance the living states of the neighborhood people, the government leaders responsible for the security and defense of the property must direct the utilization of the advancement plan for the medina and the whole village of Essaouira
Must-See Places in Essaouira
A wonderful coastline fishing city in the tourist crowded locale of Marrakech, Essaouira pulls in a considerable number of annual travelers, such as the production group of Game of Thrones who utilized the glorious city as a setting in a few scenes. Full of history, which can be seen largely in its delightful beach fortifications, and loaded with culture, acclaimed specifically for its music, Essaouria prides itself for its wide a range of leisure activities and tourist spots.
These are protective wall barriers or banks that monitor a château or settlement. Constructed as a type of shield, it is nothing unexpected that despite everything they stand up to this day in different parts of Morocco, from Asilah, to Essaouira. Essaouira’s ramparts are lovely and striking elements of history which give the city an impressive feel. These ramparts also give the best place watch the coastline. For under $2, guests can truly look closely at the ramparts, making for magnificent beach and city photography.
Appreciate a night at Il Mare bar
Il Mare is an eatery, a coffee shop, and bar, and is recognized for its famous and engaging live music which entices visitors to remain longer than they at first intended. With its hip patios that shows off fabulous perspectives of the historic defenses and make for a spectacular background to the feasting knowledge, Il Mare draws in numerous local people and voyagers. In addition to the fact that visitors flock here for the perfect area and mood, they’re likewise enticed in by tasting champagnes while viewing the most wonderful of sunsets at the classy piano bar.
Yearly Music Festival
For craftsmanship, the coastline area of Asilah is the place to go, yet for music, Essaouria holds the title. Plan your trip to coincide with the annual Gnaoua World Music Festival. The music celebration becomes a stage for the mystic Gnawa artists, Gnawa being individuals who came from the Ghana Empire of Ouagadougou. The celebration sees pop, jazz, rock and present world music specialists who engage up to 500,000 visitors through the span of four sensational days. What more, the event is free for everyone to attend.
Visit an argan oil cooperative
With the argan tree local to the nation, Essaouria is among the top spots to get argan oil, and argan items in Morocco. Here, there are a couple of charming argan oil cooperatives which give guests an extraordinary opportunity to observe the items being produced using something so significant in the country. In rooms embellished with argan trees, ladies utilize old instruments to hand squeeze oil from the kernels and finish the detailed procedure of making argan cream. It is to be sure costlier to purchase the argan items from here, however, it’s very worth seeing the procedure direct in what is something like an outdoors gallery.
Essaouira’s shorelines are prime areas for windsurfing and kitesurfing among other water sports. With Essaouira profiting from strong breezes lasting throughout the year, particularly in summer, and with a substantial swell in winter, the unpracticed and the accomplished rush here to attempt their hand at another thrilling adventure. With city being a perfect area for these sports, there are a lot of surf shops and surfing schools, and in addition windsurfing schools in Essaouira that are extraordinary for first time learners. An awesome substitute far from the huge touristy urban communities.
On the off chance that water activities don’t interest you, the lovely coastlines of Essaouira are additionally incredible for a horseback ride. As an option in contrast to touring the landscape by foot, voyagers can jog through the ocean and over the hills on a horse back experience. These undertakings is good for first timers as well, offering instructional exercises and heaps of help for the individuals who have never ridden. With activities starting from an hour long to a couple of long periods of horseback riding, there’s an adventure pack to suit anybody and is certainly a great moment.
Sidi Mohamad Ben Abdellah Museum
Essaouira’s one of a kind historical center, Sidi Mohammad Ben Abdellah Museum was named after city’s founder, and is located in a nineteenth century manor. Showing recorded antiques, from old stoneware to adornments, it pays incredible reverence to the city’s rich history and is prestigious for being the best exhibition hall in the city. Guests can acknowledge not just the excellent engineering of the working in which it is found, yet the sheer scope of things inside that still hold such a large amount of their unique excellence. There’s likewise a considerable measure to be learned here encompassing the Berber culture, with data about their customs and conventions.
Fish market and Fish port
Because Essaouira was the primary fish port of Morocco in the middle part of 1900s, the fish port and market are an absolute necessity see. Just going there and appreciate the realness of the surroundings makes for a genuinely quiet evening, reminding sightseers that Essaouira is in fact an angling town. The view is lovely, with masses of little water crafts framing a relatively unending influx of splendid blue. With angling such an essential market in Essaouira, walk somewhat far from the port and there are a lot of anglers offering the freshest catch of the day that you can appreciate newly cooked.
A must visit market in Essaouira is the old souk. In each city and residential area in Morocco, tourists must take the opportunity to visit the traditional market lanes that are frequently maze like and overpowering with scents and hues. Offering customary garments, embroidered works of art, stoneware, and even sustenance, these business sectors are a fortune trove for conventional keepsakes, and offer a standout amongst the most captivating social encounters in Morocco.
Had Dra is one of the biggest in Morocco and an option in if you want to shop in souvenir markets. For those sufficiently fortunate to be in Essaouira on a Sunday, take a quick taxi or bus ride to the Had Dra market which is loaded with creatures and agrarian items. The market began off as a slave showcase some many years back, a custom which has now halted. Nonetheless, the market remains saturated with history and is a less travel site, however an extraordinary and genuine understanding into the common Moroccan life, and an opportunity to watch the way toward purchasing and offering domesticated animals and fresh vegetables.
The history of the Moulin Rouge: a mythical place where dances and songs transport you to a magical world
After the defeat of Napoleon III during the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 and the economic depression that followed until 1896, France tries to rebuild itself and heal its wounds by plunging into recklessness, feast and lightness. This new breath which invades the whole of France is mainly felt in Paris, city of all excesses where the euphoria of the period replaces the evils engendered by the war. At that time Europe was experiencing great social, political and economic progress and the momentum of general positivism took precedence over the wounds of the past. In the heart of the French capital, itself in the midst of urbanization and modernization, Parisians from the middle-class bourgeoisie profit from economic progress and are enchanted in cafés, cabarets and concert halls. It’s here Belle Epoque . At the heart of all this popular boiling, butte Montmartre is a real symbol: its concert halls and café-concerts become the sulphurous emblems of Paris during this period full of joy that will last nearly 40 years.
Moulin Rouge, birth of a symbol
It is in this context that the Moulin Rouge opens for the first time, October 6, 1889. Located at the foot of the Butte Montmartre, the cabaret is an immediate success. The vision of the two businessmen who run it is a hit: Joseph Oller and Charles Zidler know the tips of the fingers of the Parisians and want to make this place the real headquarters of the city’s biggest night owls. . The public is at the rendezvous. The bourgeois in search of debauchery go there to tinker with the girls of joy. As for painters and writers, they get drunk in the exhilarating atmosphere of this cabaret to inspire what will become their most beautiful works.
The decor of the cabaret is recognizable among a thousand others: a mill with wide moving wings, entirely painted in red, decorated with a miller and a miller who seem to exchange a complicit glance at the windows. Inside, the revelers discover a huge dance floor with a small stage. The walls are covered with mirrors reflecting the dim lights escaping from the large chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. Behind the mill hides a garden planned for the beautiful days and in which stands an enormous elephant in life-size plaster, coming from the universal exhibition of 1889. Inside the animal, a belly dancer makes turn the heads of guests soaked. Straight out of the imagination of French painter and caricaturist Adolphe Léon Willette, the decor is totally revolutionary for the time. No other place is like the Moulin Rouge and the triumph is monumental.
Frills and dancers
Temple of celebration and dance, the Moulin Rouge recruits the most famous dancers of the time. But it is a dance, called the Quadrille and created in 1850 by a dancer of Bal Mabille , Celeste Mogador , which will give rise to the birth of the most famous step of Parisian dance, the French Cancan . On the wild rhythms of Jacques Offenbach, the dancers of Quadrille are already losing the head to all the bourgeois of the city. But it’s actually on the other side of the Channel, in London, that the French Cancan was invented as we know it. This dance inspired by the Quadrille and improved by the English producer Charles Morton in 1861, creates a real frenzy in the world of dance.
Indecent, jovial and popular, the French Cancan’s popularity is the art of making the splits with a leg up, while lifting his petticoats. Dressed in black stockings, garters, lace and frilly, the dancers of Cancan literally spell the customers of the Moulin Rouge. Many dancers, such as La Goulue, Miss Jenny or Nini Pattes-en-l’air then become the symbols of cabaret and bait the client in search of thrills. The great French painter of the time, Henri de Toulouse Lautrec , will immortalize these colorful dance scenes and nocturnal delirium in some of his now famous works.
The beginnings of the Moulin Rouge
In 1880, businessmen Joseph Oller and Charles Zidler bought the Queen Blanche, a crumbling music hall located in the malfamé district of Pigallein Paris. Many brushstrokes and a total refreshment later, they place a bright red mill on the roof: the Moulin Rouge was born! At the time, the cabaret had a dance floor, an art gallery, a garden, and you could also walk on donkeys! The upper middle class of the time pressed for slum.
The success of the Moulin Rouge
The cabaret owes its success to several elements: a revolutionary architecture, sumptuous decor, themes of evenings where one mixes dance, humor and music, shows inspired by the circus, alluring costumes and the famous “french cancan” which makes its appearance at the beginning of the 20th century! In fact, the Moulin-Rouge troupe has won six world records, including the largest number of leg lifts! Great stars of the music hall will succeed: Mistinguett, Jean Gabin, Edith Piaf, Yves Montand, Line Renaud, etc. It is not for nothing if it is called “the most famous cabaret of the world”! In 1989, a centennial gala was even organized, bringing together celebrities from around the world such as Charles Aznavour, Lauren Bacall, Ray Charles, Tony Curtis, Ella Fitzgerald, Barbara Hendricks.
A revolutionary room architecture, sumptuous decor sticking to the style of the time, themes of evenings where festivities and humor intermingled wonderfully: fairy shows inspired by the circus, famous attractions like the “Petomane” , costumes alluring but daring that please. This is the craze and the beginning of the long history of the Moulin Rouge! People from all over the world make the trip to admire this legendary place. Bohemians and artists make it their favorite place. Renoir and Lautrec exhibited their greatest works, which earned the Moulin Rouge an international reputation!
A new dance is emerging: the “french cancan” ! Slightly stripped women swaying gracefully on the track: this is the beginning of the first “reviews”. The success is at its height the first ten years, but will decline suddenly, during a show that will shock the manners of the time: “Quat’zarts” . It was in 1902that the hour of the last balloon struck! Directed Cleopatra naked by four men with virile girls equally naked. It was the scene of too much!
The following year will mark a turning point in the history of the Moulin Rouge! Major works were undertaken by the famous architect Niermans ; creator of the “Casino de Paris”, “Folies Bergères” and other popular places of the Belle Epoque. Until the First World War the Moulin Rouge was the “cabaret dinner-show temple”, a great first! The spectators were there to laugh and be moved by the best known magazines like “Voluptata”, the “Leaf of Vine”, the “Dream of Egypt”, or “Shut up you flabbergasted me” A real treat for the public, totally conquered.
1907: the “Mistinguett” years in “La Revue de la Femme”. A lady of character, singer and comic actress with poignant repartee! His talent seduces the spectators unanimously!
The history of the Moulin Rouge today
Today, this place full of stories makes the world dream and remains synonymous with charm and fairy-tale “French”. Strass, sequins, feathers, sets, dancers, everything is there to amaze the audience. Did you know ? The Moulin Rouge is the largest champagne customer in the world, with more than 350,000 bottles consumed per year!
The Moulin Rouge is still and again more beautiful and refined magazines, rhinestones and sequins, feathers, decorations always more crazy and girls all more surprising than the others. His magic operates on the whole world.
It is close to this mythical place full of history and magic that the whole team of the Cloche d’Or awaits you to offer you a 100% Frenchy dinner, just like this neighborhood and this atmosphere so much Parisian!
The origin of the french cancan
In the 19th century, couples danced the corner-corner that was also called cancan. In duet, the choreography had the particularity of showing the frous-frous women, hidden under long dresses. But the cancan is really a place thanks to Celeste Mogador, the star of Bal Mabille, who puts the cancan on the front of the stage by hiring acrobatic dancers and daring, alluring outfits to entertain the whole Paris.
On the other side of the Channel, the producer Charles Morton imports the dance that he calls French Cancan and which takes Offenbach’s tunes that are not to displease, while bringing a liberated image of the French girl of the time. But back to France, where the cancan becomes the star dance of the best Parisian cabarets: the Moulin Rouge, the Folies Bergères … Painters make it a theme of reflection and La Goulue or Valentin the Boneless are the pictorial heroes of the painters of Montmartre, including Toulouse Lautrec. This Parisian dance also inspired Jean Renoir for his famous eponymous film where Jean Gabin and Françoise Arnoul hold the top of the bill.
Dancers and dancers become famous, the Goulue, Miss Jenny, Grid, Serpolette, Nini Paws-in-the-Air who will open a school of Cancan, The Cheese Cheese, Valentine’s Boned, Jane Avril said Jeanne the Mad. Artists find their inspiration, especially Henri de Toulouse Lautrec, who immortalize these colorful scenes and dancers, especially La Goulue. La Goulue, whose real name is Louise Weber, was born in Clichy-la-Garenne on July 13, 1866, in a Jewish family in Alsace. His mother ran a laundry in Clichy.
The little story says that she borrowed the clothes of the clients for her outings.Dancing in small suburban dances, Louise Weber quickly became a part of her mentor, Charles Desteuque, a popular personality, loved both for her dancing skills and for her charming, daring attitude. Despres, the brothers Oller and Charles Zidler launched it into the cancan. When she danced the naturalistic quadrille, she teased the male audience by the whirlwind of her skirts with raised ruffles that showed her panties, and tiptoe, she was flying a hat of a man. Her first mentor and her habit of emptying clients’ glasses while she was at their tables earned her the nickname ” La Goulue “.
In 1893, she was the first star to inaugurate the Olympia stage, founded by Joseph Oller. She is, in a way, the show godmother of all the stars who will eventually follow in her footsteps. At the Jardin de Paris, she attacked the Prince of Wales, future Edward VII: ” Hey, Wales! You pay champagne! Is it you who is enjoying, or is your mother inviting? When she rented a sumptuous mansion on Avenue des Champs-Elysees, she was the best-paid star of her time.
La Goulue arriving at the Moulin Rouge Rich and famous, in 1895 she decided to leave the Moulin Rouge and In Montmartre, she met Pierre-Auguste Renoir, who introduced him into a group of models who earned extra money by posing for artists and photographers. Achille Delmaet, companion of Marie-Juliette Louvet, who became famous later, made many nudes-photos of Goulue .
On April 6, she commissioned her friend Lautrec with decorative panels to decorate her dancer’s house. In December 1895, she gave birth to a son, Simon Victor, of unknown father (“a prince,” she said). A modest fairground adopted it and gave it its name. In 1898 she performed with Adrien Pezon who taught him to train the lions.
In 1900, at the town hall of the eighteenth arrondissement of Paris, La Goulue married the magician Joseph-Nicolas Droxler (born in Paris on March 24, 1872, domiciled rue de Belfort in Paris). He became a tamer. The couple lived at 112 Boulevard Rochechouart (18th arrondissement).
Every evening dancers perform on the stage of the cabaret, more or less bare, in front of people of all ranks drinking alcohol: counts, bourgeois, as men of small jobs. It is in these circumstances that the famous dance of Cancan develops in this place. Many intellectuals rub shoulders at the Moulin Rouge which becomes a real reference for artists. Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec , captivated by the district of Montmartre, regularly goes to the cabaret to make paintings there: he even had a table reserved for him. He left an important collection of paintings depicting scenes of life at the Moulin Rouge.
The architecture of the building was eccentric, mixing all cultures, allowing everyone to recognize themselves.
Mr. Mohamed Dekkak believes in the saying ‘READING IS FOOD FOR THE SOUL AND MIND’. Since childhood, he is fond of collecting books of different genres. Reading is one of his favourite pastimes, as it not only helps him discover new information but it also helps him to keep up with trends and events of this generation.
During his travel to Paris, he made sure that he drop by and spend time reading in one of the largest public and research libraries in the world, The Bibliothèque Nationale de France (BNF). The humble beginning of the National Library of France commenced during the medieval period. Charles V established a small personal archive in the Louvre in 1368 but it is during the reign of Louis XI that the collection flourished into a full-fledged library. Because of this, Louis XI can be entitled as the founder of the royal library. He maintained its purpose up to the second half of the XVth century. The manuscripts were joined by the collection of inscriptions, prints, awards, gifts, coinages, and books as the French monarchy grew. Thanks to the introduction of the printing media in 1450.
In 1537, King Francis I required publishers to deposit a copy of every book printed in the kingdom in the library, which absolutely facilitated the collection to grow. At present, this system called ‘double legal deposit’ is still practised and requires all bookshops and printers to make a contribution. The library now houses around 14 million books and 250,000 manuscripts.
The realization of Bibliothèque Nationale de France (BNF) was made possible by the merger of the old National Library with the new Library of France in 1994. The BNF composes of five wings: François-Mitterrand, Richelieu, Arsenal, The Opera Library and Maison Jean Vilar in Avignon, as well as Gallica, the digital collection. The most visited parts of the library are the Richelieu, which accommodates the most ancient archives and François-Mitterrand has the most up to date collections.
By early 2000s, the facilities of the library had suffered deterioration, which made it impossible to stand the test of time. Due to this concern, a major overhaul of the library was started. The renovation started in 2011, Bruno Gaudin was assigned to manage the project, while the refurbishment of the listed ‘salle Labrouste’ was assigned to Jean Francois-Lagneau. The project runs in two phases in order to keep the library partially open and its completion is expected in 2020.
In January 2017, the former site of the national library located at rue de Richelieu in Paris has reopened. The architectural design of the library now exhibits a contemporary glass airlock, which diverges from the building’s old design.
The library in Richelieu is well known for its Cabinet of medals and relics displayed the second floor. While strolling, your eyes will easily catch original plaster sculpture of Voltaire by Houdon. There is an urban legend that the heart of the philosopher is buried at the base of the monument.
The Cabinet on the second floor It owes its birth to the Cabinet of French kings, which united several collections, especially that of the Duke of Luynes. This wonderful little-known museum has rare examples of Greek pottery, stones, coins, Roman marbles, but also ivories, bronzes and silverware and contains a number of symbolical objects for the French history, such as so-called bronze Throne of Dagobert dating to VII-IXth centuries.
The library features the Department of Manuscripts filled with around 10,000 well-lit documents, as well as the collection of Middle age art.
The library at Mitterrand is well known for its continuously changing designs, glistening under the rays the sun or in the drops of rain. Climbing up to the library is a little challenging because you have to deal with strong wind and slippery wood steps.
As you walk around the large library, you will notice that the library’s heritage of tremendous intricacy is now kissed with the modern touch, which maximizes richness of the heritage of the areas that describe it.
It is Mr. Mohamed Dekkak’s advocacy to encourage everybody especially the children to read books. He also suggests that if you ever plan to visit Paris and wish to have a little moment of peace, far from the typical noisy and crowded tourist spots, the French National Library or BNF is one of the best choices for relaxation and studying.
Mr. Mohamed Dekkak travelled in Paris, France and attended a colloquium marking the Centenary of the First World War from 2014 to 2018. It is primarily held to commemorate all those precious lives that were lost during the Great War.
The main purpose of the event is to discuss the incidents that transpired which leads to the First World War as well as the post-war implications. Many intellectuals, scholars attended the seminar.
On November 11, 2018, the world will observe the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War. A ceasefire happened on November 11, 1918, ending the war in Western Europe. This came after four years of intense struggle. On that fateful day in 1918, the armistice marked the end of a historical event that changed the lives of our families forever.
As a result of opposing colonial ambitions and a network of alliances, the war happened between the armed forces of France, Great Britain, Russia, Canada and the United States against those of Germany, Italy and Austria-Hungary. A total of 30 countries got involved in the turmoil.
The First World War was a turning point in world history. Over 16 million lives were lost. No one knew what kind of war it was going to be or how long it would last. But men were rushed and join in order to protect their loved ones and show patriotism to their very own land.
When the war started in August 1914, many young men were sent into the battle while women suffered from the physical and mental effects of warfare in hospitals at home and on the front line. It left families without a father, a brother and sons. No place was left unaffected by loss, which lasted for four years.
Apart from these negative outcomes, these four years of struggle are also marked with great resolution and tenacity. It was the time when unique solutions for important provisions were discovered such as tea bags, wristwatch and first aid kit. Women have stepped up to pursue new roles and have helped in taking care of the wounded soldiers. Volunteers from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and other parts of the world came together in service and solidarity.
The war had profound consequences in the health of the troops of 60 million European soldiers who were mobilised from 1914 to 1918.
As a consequence of the war, on June 1919, a peace treaty is signed at Versailles. Germany was held liable for all the loss and impairments and must pay hefty reparation. In 1920, Austria-Hungary and the Ottoman empires are dismantled making way for new countries. Germany had given up approximately 15 percent of its territory to France, Denmark, Belgium and Poland.
Memorials were erected in thousands of villages and towns. The poppy flower became the symbol of the First World War. It reformed the world map and changed the way we are governed, our national identity and opened our eyes to what will happen if peace is not achieved and forbearance is thrown away.
The conference for the Centenary of the First World War from 2014 to 2018 effectively highlighted the heroes who bravely fought and did not cease until harmony is realized.
Located at the buzzing Golden Triangle of Paris, Le Piaf is the new playground of the famous Bruce Merrite. The dining place fully exemplifies its name – an appealing sparrow that lives on fresh water and music. With its little wings flying above the French capital, it decided to make a nest on a private street in the stylish neighborhood in at the corner of rue Mermoz in 8th district, at 38 Rue Jean Mermoz, very close from the lavish boutiques of the Champs Elysees and Avenue Montaigne.
The lovely bird adores good company, great food and relax as well with friends in a chic and comfortable place in an easy going setting. Therefore, it is quite understandable to call it Piaf, similar to France’s own sultry songstress-sparrow, Edith.
The kitchen staff whip up a few wonderful classics such as foie gras, burrata, smoked salmon, risotto, entrecote Angus, panagragrelic frisée with bacon and perfect egg. Dishes are served in a soup tureen porcelain – lovely and quirky! Then, the huge rib of beef matured for a kilo at 84 € good for two servings, well, could actually still largely satisfy a third diner!
After hours of working hard, you can chill at Le Piaf. There’s a cocktail bar at the basement which is fairly large that serves as a venue for meeting friends outside the office or simply kill hours prior to dining out on the town. But forget about calling and organizing your group for a meet up as they are most likely to be there already, reclining on the red velvet armchairs enjoying a Mojito or Bellini.
People come here to spend a good time, however, others still cannot refrain from singing together and with conviction along with the pianist who is playing the French classics, English rock, and American pop with the help of a DJ. Le Piaf frequently invites artists and DJ to come to play live, attracting customers to stay late for the party. From Thursday until Saturday, the basement bar welcomes guaranteed night owls up to 5 am, with an extensive selection of cocktails worth € 15.
Also a restaurant for late-night dining, Le Piaf is a favorite of the neighborhood among night owls who are usually stucked to their desks. The food is savory and highlights contemporary recipes of French tradition presented in adorable vintage plates. It offers delightful and efficient service too. Like any good Parisian, your sweet tooth will be in heaven, as the pastries are supervised by Cyril Lignac. Deserts such as rum baba, lemon tart, Gianduja chocolate tart are recommended.
With regards to decorations, well, it sure wasn’t overseen by Roger Harth, the popular theater decorator, but the chandeliers, the soft lights, the candlesticks, and the tapestries feature a soft and subdued lighting that perfectly suitable at night.
The clock is ticking, but that’s not important as it’s the weekend after all. The ambiance is so lively in this nest of the night that the only thing left to do is spread your wings and fly, with Piaf.
Émile-Antoine Bourdelle is one of the greatest French sculptors of the early twentieth century. Yet, despite the existence of a Paris museum devoted to his memory alone, many facets of his work are largely underestimated or even ignored, foremost among which is his teaching activity. But teaching is not long in becoming the engine and the culmination of his flourishing as a man and an artist. Bourdelle spends twenty years of his life, from 1909 to 1929, providing practical advice and opening the spirit of several hundred young artists who flock, every week, in the premises of the Académie de la Grande Chaumière, in Montparnasse. His sessions are divided into two parts, a prioriquite distinct: the practical corrections of the works sketched out by his pupils, said courses, and the reading of his personal reflections on such or such a subject, said lessons. This ensemble is so important to the artist that at the end of his life he sees it as one of the pillars of his heritage in the world of art. This is the starting point of a study devoted to Bourdelle’s theoretical reflection, to the way he forges it and transmits it, and to the eminent place, it gives him in the Parisian artistic landscape of his time.
Most of the sources consulted for this work are kept in Paris, in the archives of the Bourdelle museum. The main collection consists of the artist’s lessons and lessons at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière. This non-inventoried set includes seventy-five lessons (1909-1922), as well as twenty-six lessons (1909-1910). It was also necessary to use other archival files to enlighten both the youth of Bourdelle and his aesthetic positions: a folder entitled “Biographical Ensemble”, constituted by the artist himself, as well as his ” Writings on Art “and other” Miscellaneous Writings “. The “Students” file, as well as the active and passive correspondence of Bourdelle, were also the subject of an in-depth analysis.
Other repositories have been frequented more occasionally. The National Archives, in particular, keep all the existing documents concerning Bourdelle’s schooling at the National School of Fine Arts, as well as the career of his teacher, Alexandre Falguière. Some records also provide information on daily life in the institution at the end of the nineteenth century and were consulted (AJ 5251, 322, 461, 909-910, 944, 970-971). The archives of the Rodin Museum provided valuable information concerning the Rodin Institute, a facility opened very briefly by Rodin, Bourdelle and Jules Desbois in 1901, while the archives of Jacques Doucet, held at the National Institute of History of the art, provided details of Bourdelle’s plans for conserving the lessons of La Grande Chaumière (Jacques Doucet fonds, box 36, mf BXXI, 17838-17903). Although the School of Fine Arts in Toulouse does not keep any trace of the Bourdelle passage in its walls, it does provide information on the professors it attended and on the history of the institution in general (Dossiers Professors’ Staff Nos. 102 and 137, and file B11: History of the School of Fine Arts of Toulouse, 1800-1990). Finally, the museum Ingres de Montauban keeps, in its archives, a large number of drawings and some manuscripts of Bourdelle which relate mainly to its young years.
The birth of a self-taught sculpture teacher (1861-1909)
- Bourdelle and teaching:
the formation of a sculptor, the construction of a spirit:
Born on October 30, 1861 in Montauban, Émile-Antoine Bourdelle is a mediocre student but with an early sense of observation and drawing. Encouraged by his family, he embraces the artistic career very early and follows the ordinary paths of academic education. Thus, he entered the School of Fine Arts in Toulouse at the age of fifteen and, seven years later, at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. This traditional apprenticeship is associated, during his childhood, with a rural education and a permanent observation of the nature, which marks all his imagination of his imprint. Having never ceased to look for masters with whom to enrich his meager culture and his plastic technique, he gradually builds himself, thanks to his youth encounters, then thanks to Falguière, Dalou and especially Rodin, a vision of his own art and how it should be universally taught. As such, the Rodin Institute’s experience is crucial for its future orientations, which took shape in 1909, when it left Rodin’s studio and fully engages in personal research.
- The Académie de la Grande Chaumière:
an institution inscribed in the artistic landscape of its time:
To understand all the originality of Bourdelle’s teaching, it is necessary to put him in his time. In the nineteenth century indeed, Paris drains a large number of artists in search of recognition but, before that, a teaching at the height of their ambitions. The city offers these young people several types of education, first and foremost the prestigious School of Fine Arts. For a long time undisputed, the School of Fine Arts in Paris saw years of doubt, during which emerge other models of education. It is indeed from the second half of the nineteenth century that appear in the front of the scene so-called free schools. If some, like the Julian Academy, remain close to the academic model in their operation and their objectives, others move away to advocate greater freedom, a direct inspiration of life. This is the second category belonging to the Académie de la Grande Chaumiere, located at Montparnasse in the street of the same name. Although we still have very little information about it today, some precious testimonials nevertheless allow us to give an account of the functioning and the atmosphere of this reference establishment.
- Antoine Bourdelle’s workshop, a unique place
It was during the year 1909 that Bourdelle gave his first lessons at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière. For this artist long in the shadow of Rodin, it is truly a new beginning, the opportunity to express his rich personality. The workshop that he animates rue de la Grande Chaumiere, at the request of Marthe Stettler, Alice Danenberg and Sergio Castelucho, the directors of the place, then offers a unique face in the Paris of the time: open the same year, it attracts for twenty years an ever increasing number of young artists and is distinguished by the non-conformism of the teacher and the principles that he states therein.
The lessons of La Grande Chaumière:
A bright teaching (1909-1929)
- Practical teaching or methodical learning of an art:
With his ideas on art, Bourdelle delivers to La Grande Chaumière his technical secrets and his personal ideas with unusual verve. His words are the most direct expression of his experience and of the lessons he has learned from his life of toil and plastic research. In addition to the necessary business questions, he develops in the intimacy of the workshop his position on the most diverse subjects and fits in more than one way in the nineteenth century that formed it. Straddling two centuries, between two systems of thought and teaching, the sculptor cultivates this ambivalence and makes his word a unique path, a dissonant voice that draws from several sources to offer the best learning, far from any prejudice and of all determinism. The result of a man’s experience, practical teaching is the most spontaneous facet of Bourdelle’s comments, which reacts according to the sculptures sketched by his pupils. He is all the better in demonstrating his impetuous, demanding and benevolent temperament at the same time.
- Theoretical teaching or the training of the spirits:
Reflecting his interests and other concerns, Bourdelle’s teaching is multiple. The teacher is not content with giving technical precepts and aesthetic orientations to his pupils: his practical teaching is thus combined with a theoretical teaching – the distinction between the two being often very tenuous. The latter, abounding, sometimes contradictory, is based on Bourdelle’s highly sacred vision of art and the artist, and makes life the main source of inspiration for the creator. To support his argument, the sculptor makes reference to the masters of the past, pointing out that any artist is certainly built in the admiration of the ancients, but also in the appropriation of their formulas, in the incessant search for truth. And it is only by looking at the world and at art an original and completely personal look that an individual becomes an artist.
- Concrete teaching:
The lessons that Bourdelle offers to the Académie de la Grande Chaumière constitute much more than mere theoretical teaching; they feed on the master’s life, his experiences and his plastic emotions. Bourdelle distinguishes itself by organizing for his students various group visits, in Paris or in the provinces. This real confrontation with art allows the sculptor not only to illustrate some of his remarks, but also to anchor his teaching in a historical reality, at a time when any aesthetic choice can take a political dimension. It doubles for some of a confrontation with the art of the master. Bourdelle, who considers himself an art seeker among others, does not mention much of his own works during his visits to La Grande Chaumière but opens to a few young people his personal workshops. Indeed, some students are employed by Bourdelle as assistants, even models, and more significantly illustrate the special links he could forge with the youth of his entourage.
The master of thought of a generation
- A united artistic society:
The lessons of La Grande Chaumière as they are taught by Bourdelle highlight its very nature as a man and place great emphasis on the links between the teacher and his students, the community of spirit which, as well, is formed. Far from all conventions, Bourdelle establishes with his workshop a relationship of trust and exchange, which benefits him as much as young people. It is through this highly personalized form of communication as well as the very content of his teaching that Bourdelle differs from many art teachers who are contemporary with him, often locked in an academic system that restricts temperament. Now, if the writings of Bourdelle reveal to us much of the man he is, the same is true of the human relations he has with his pupils, on which we have several testimonies, but also, and to a large extent, the correspondence of the master. It reveals that the young people who live alongside him form, alongside the Bourdelle family, a united artistic society.
- Bourdellian maieutics:
By helping the youth of his time to understand as quickly as possible the principles he himself had to learn in the solitude of his personal workshop, the sculptor refines his thought and his own self-knowledge. Considering artistic education severely, as well as the official art of his time, he has a mission to renovate artistic creation, to pose through his disciples the milestones of a new creative order. But, deeply humanist and fine psychologist, disciple in this of Socrates, he considers that the delivery of the spirits is a necessary precondition to the knowledge of oneself and, therefore, of the others. By choosing to follow this path more than a purely technical way,
- Students’ artistic debt:
spiritual heritage more than aesthetic
In his role as a teacher, Bourdelle has no equal to multiply the strength of his audience. The artist considers his role over a long period: it is not only a question of training young people in artistic creation but also of accompanying them as much as possible in their artistic life. Nevertheless, if the attendance of the sculptor is widely claimed in the first decades of the century, it is often difficult to assimilate stylistically an artist to his former master when it comes to Bourdelle. This part of the study would require detailed parallels from one work to another, but it is necessary above all to understand, given their correspondence, their possible writings and some of their work, the aesthetic influence that the artist may have had on the young people who frequented his studio and in what proportions we can speak of filiations from one to the other. In as much as Bourdelle’s teaching itself preaches independence, self-discovery, and the search for a personal aesthetic path, the debt incurred by pupils towards their teacher appears, legitimately, to be more spiritual than properly stylistic.
Bourdelle, the intellectual
- Bourdelle and the writing:
“one of the faces too ignored of his genius”
Outstanding speaker, Bourdelle lives with the words a true love story. His literary essays, his most diverse texts are for him an opportunity to deliver so many facets of his personality. In addition, knowing the writings of Bourdelle is the best way to understand both the man and the artist he is. Gradually aware himself of this compelling need to write to live, he surrounds himself with writers and thinkers whose attendance enriches his culture and refines his way of thinking. Writing becomes for him a refuge, an outlet and ultimately an end in itself. Perfectionist, demanding, Bourdelle is not content to put disordered thoughts on paper, he is always looking for the ideal form, the beauty of words and images.
- Teaching as a springboard for recognition:
The lessons of La Grande Chaumière increase Bourdelle’s influence, contribute to his reputation as a pedagogue and thus attract a little more attention to his contemporaries. However, few articles are strictly devoted to this teaching, only those close to Bourdelle seem to have immediately taken the measure of his exceptional qualities as a teacher. However, whatever their success, his works alone do not explain the esteem and respect he arouses at the end of his life, the weight of his word as sculptor. By promoting the progressive construction of his discourse, between 1909 and 1929, teaching allows him to refine his thought and find the best ways to formulate it. But it also helps, by training hundreds of young people in his principles, to spread his ideas in a circle initially restricted and then wider and wider. In this way he becomes, besides an esteemed and sought-after pedagogue, an intellectual among others.
Rich and abundant, the lessons of La Grande Chaumière are a unique testimony of Bourdelle’s way of thinking, its aesthetic and ethical orientations, but also a work in its own right, an initiatory discourse. Revealing, under the aegis of Socrates, a whole generation, Bourdelle found in this gift of his person and his ideas on art its full development. However, Bourdelle’s corrections are not without ambiguities and, while the artist refutes the academic bias, his teaching is partly inspired by it: his freedom of your choice and the academicism of models that he follows. But, by refusing to follow Rodin’s footsteps, it opens the way for a whole generation of artists who do not recognize themselves in these sensual works: Bourdelle thus embodies the will to change, not the real accomplishment of this change. The study of what is commonly called “lessons of the Great Thatched Cottage” has opened up vast prospects for research, and it is especially in that it reveals the intellectual groping of the artist that it is particularly fruitful.
The two slaves are to Michelangelo what the Mona Lisa is to Vinci, one of his most famous works. If at first the two statues were to be part of the tomb of Pope Julius II in 1515, the project was modified after his death and they were finally excluded for the sake of economy. Following this change, they leave Italy and arrive at the court of the King of France through a Florentine exile, Roberto Strozzi. They are then deposited in the castles of Ecouen and Richelieu and will remain there until the revolutionary whirlwind takes them to the Louvre in 1794.
More important than the ancient inspiration visible in these statues as in most works of this period, their symbolism remains uncertain. In view of the postures, some think that the Slaves represent the enslavement of the arts after the death of the Pope, a great patron, others look for an explanation drawn from Antiquity which takes up the idea of Plato who wants the soul human being chained to a heavy body, others see it as a symbol of the Pope’s political power. Whatever the message, his expression is worked in marble and accentuated by the opposition between the two slaves. The one on the right, the rebellious Slave, has a posture that gives the impression that he is trying to free himself from a mysterious hold, his arm is trying to pull away, his right leg
The other, the dying Slave, lets himself be carried away by his fate. In reality he does not die but is absorbed by a dream that leaves him in a state of enslavement. One has an exaggerated musculature showing his effort, his head is straight, his eyes open and a veil hides his masculine attribute. The other has a musculature that remains shy with a leaning head and closed eyes, symbols of abandonment. On the other hand he is naked. Everything opposes the first in the will and acceptance of the state of servitude in which they are both immersed.
Michelangelo: Sculptor, painter, architect and Italian poet (Caprese, near Arezzo, 1475-Rome 1564).
First artist considered during his lifetime in all the dimension of his genius, Michelangelo was a master of the sublime at the time of the second Renaissance . His insistence on perfection and his perception of the opposition between human distress and the divine world endow his work with eternal strength. Son of a ruined family, Michelangelo is not supposed to make an artistic career. In Florence, where he spent his adolescence, however, he entered the studio of the Fresco painter Domenico Ghirlandaio, which he left after a year (1489). He feels and wants to be a sculptor – marble sculptor. Noticed by Laurent I er de Medici , he was hired to “casino” of San Marco, where he can study at leisure the antique collection Prince. He also attends the humanist milieu, which will have a decisive influence on his spiritual formation and his artistic ambition. Her first works are a Combat of Centaurs and Lapiths and a Virgin at Staircase , which translates her debt to her great predecessor, Donatello.
To the Celebrity
Leaving the Medici palace in 1492, Michelangelo leaves for Venice, stays in Bologna, where he immerses himself in the example of a master of the early quattrocento, Jacopo della Quercia , and arrives in Rome: this first Roman stay date its most famous Pietà , that of St. Peter’s Basilica (1498), which offers the highest expression of purity, and, paradoxically, a drunken Bacchus , who is the most pagan of his figures. Returning to Florence in 1501, Michelangelo received the commission of David , a colossal statue of which he is the symbol of his personal ideal of virile beauty. Now famous, he also began a fresco, the Battle of Cascina , which must be the counterpart of that of Leonardo da Vinci (Battle of Anghiari) , in the hall of the Grand Council at Palazzo Vecchio; of the work, which will never be executed, we know sketches with animated nudes. At the same time, Michelangelo composes large medallions, either carved (Madonna Pitti) or painted (Holy Family, so-called Tondo Doni), whose figures, linked together in a powerful block, belong to sculpture.
The apotheosis of the Sistine
In 1505, Michelangelo went again to Rome, at the request of Julius II , who intends to entrust to him the sculptures of his tomb (the Slaves) ; but, the project being suspended, the pope uses the artist to decorate the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel , in the Vatican: titanic work, populated by more than three hundred characters, which will be carried out in four years (1508-1512) , without the contribution of any help. The ensemble presents the history of humanity based on the main episodes of Genesis , from Creation (Adam’s Creation) to the Flood. The scenes rising above the vault like celestial visions, the figures of sibyls and prophets, announcing the coming of Christ, and the astonishing ignudi(naked teenagers), who seem to support the vault, represent the most perfect accomplishment of linear drawing, Florentines, amplified by the Roman monumentality.
At the invitation of Pope Paul III Farnese , Michelangelo will return to the site of the Sistine, to realize the immense fresco of the Last Judgm ent (1536-1541), which decorates the wall of the bottom of the chapel. There he paints the high figure of a righteous Christ dominating a visionary space where the souls of the damned are swirling. Forgetting the classic style, he anticipates the wide pulsation of the Baroque , while delivering the message of anguish raised by the idea of the Last Judgment. The frescoes of the Sistine Chapel make Michelangelo the apostle of Mannerism , grouping painters who prefer curved lines with straight lines and favor the scenes appropriate to the expression of a dramatic tension.
The other major sponsors
While in Florence from 1515, Michelangelo was asked by Pope Leo X to build the funerary chapel of the Medici. He then undertakes the tombs of the Dukes Julian and Lorenzo II, who are themselves carved in the guise of young captains dressed in antique fashion, one representing the thinker, the other the man of action. At their feet is a sarcophagus depicting the allegories of passing time: Day and Night, Dawn and Twilight, alternately male and female characters. All the decorative elements are borrowed from the ancient repertory, but never the authority of the composition and the modernity of the style will have been more evident.
In Florence again, Michelangelo supplies the drawings that will be used to build the vestibule and staircase of the Laurentian Library , located within the walls of San Lorenzo Church. It was in 1534 that he settled permanently in Rome. He is then called to resume the project of tomb for Julius II. But Leo X and the heirs of the deceased pope gave up the grandiose monument to which Michelangelo had thought; this one, death in the soul, will have to be satisfied with a reduced model, which will be placed in the small church San Pietro in Vincoli ( Saint-Pierre-with-Links , 1545); he added to it certain marble already carved, including the impressive Moses (c.1515-1516).
The genius superior of his time
From 1546, Michelangelo devoted himself mainly to architecture. He is then, officially, the successor of Antonio da Sangallo the Younger : he draws the famous dome of St. Peter’s Basilica, but, being in the grip of the maneuvers of the friends of his predecessor, he can not realize it; he also works at the Farnese palace , which he has on the top floor and the cornice.
Also urban planner, he built the Capitol Square , taking advantage of the topography, develops plans for the transformation of the baths of Diocletian into a church (Santa Maria degli Angeli, 1561-1566) and designs the monumental Porta Pia (circa 1565). His last sculptures are three Pietà : that of the cathedral of Florence, the Pietà da Palestrina , finally the Pietà Rondanini (unfinished), which repudiates the beauty, even the physical reality, for the benefit of the only spirituality
Michelangelo is also a poet in love. One of his nephews proves this by having Florence print in 1623 a collection of sonnets and madrigals from the hands of the great artist.
The latter is part of Rome, circle that meets around the poet Vittoria Colonna . Is she the inspiration of Michelangelo’s lyricism, which Petrarch would not have denied?
A young and handsome Roman, Tommaso Cavalieri, also entered the life of Michelangelo – who taught him to draw and who called him his “precious genius” – is he the beloved object, dedicatee of so many verses and recipient of so many letters? Or the substitute of the tender Vittoria, whom Michelangelo – as platonic as his flame was – is forbidden to name publicly? Today, the first hypothesis is clearly privileged. Until the end of his life, Michelangelo remained active and took part in the artistic life of his time, advising or recommending one or another of his disciples, as a patriarch already invaded by his myth. He died in Rome at almost 90 years, but it is in Florence, his true homeland, that he rests (church Santa Croce)
To approach the work of Michelangelo is to meet an art placed under the sign of the essential complexity, the desired difficulty and the incessant renewal. The extreme richness, formal and semantic, of this work stems from the diversity of fields and techniques in which Michelangelo expressed himself: sculpture, painting, architecture and poetry, like so many exercises of style to the laws and constraints variety. However, if his most important achievements are universally famous, the omission too frequent of his secondary creations oversimplifies the image of the artist as if he had, unlike his contemporaries, only exceptional tasks to accomplish. This feeling, this extreme variety is still aroused by his double career, Florentine and Roman, which pushes him to adopt very different modes according to whether he works in the Tuscan city or in the capital of the Church . And the duration of his career, exceptional for the time (nearly seventy-five years), certainly contributes. What is there in common between the artist who polishes with so much love the Pietà of Saint-Pierre and, moved by the just pride of his own virtuosity, the signa, and the one who, assaulted by doubts, lassitude and an authentic disgust for the vanity of this art, sketched, mutilated and began again the Pietà from Milan? And what changes in his working conditions and especially in his conception of art and its role! how far, from the humanistic enthusiasm of his first patrons, passionate collectors of the ancients who saw in beauty the reflection of the divinity to this mistrust of the beautiful , if he is not “decent” and strictly subordinate to religious doctrine, reformist circles he attended at the end of his life!
Few works completed in the artisanal sense of the term to be included in Michelangelo’s catalog: a small number of sculptures, dating mainly from his youth, a single panel surely painted autograph and vast paintings painted frescoof the Vatican. But a great deal of unfinished or finished works by others, such as his late architectural enterprises, or well known by drawings that suggest only the future of a sculptural or architectonic project. The historical distance that separates us from Michelangelo is also the cause of misunderstandings that weigh on the interpretation of his works. One would misunderstand his conception of art by wanting to find personal messages, psychological or philosophical, dissociable from the form that manifests them, while both have always been elaborated by him in a close dialectical relationship. In his eyes, art was an autonomous language, which he sought, to triumph more gloriously, the greatest subtleties. It would be wrong to imagine that life than his own “satisfaction from the point of view of art” (as he told Pope Julius II about the vault of the Sistine Chapel) and the approval of an extremely limited number of true connoisseurs , belonging to the artistic world or to the cultured social elite. Finally, just as the artist rethought the means and the sense of art at every new opportunity, the approach of Michelangelo’s work is constantly challenged by new factors. Rediscovered works, such as the mural drawings of the premises located under the apse of the Medici funeral chapel in 1975 or the first version of the torso of Christ of the Pietà of Milan in 1972;and the Sistine Chapel (1980-1994), which gave these works a radiance and limpidity of surprising colors at first sight; revaluations of works such as Christ on the Cross of Santo Spirito (Casa Buonarroti, Florence), which is defeated by the candid purity of its adolescent forms; confrontations with new documents (explicit contracts in particular) or new reading of ancient sources, biographies of the artist or his own correspondence; progress in the knowledge of contemporary artists of Michelangelo, in relation to him as Sebastiano del Piombo or Daniele da Volterra; best study of its “debts” to the Tuscan masters of XIV th and XV th centuries. All these elements, combined with the changing curiosities of the generations and new types of surveys on patronage (Michelangelo and the Medicifor example) and the social and economic aspects of artistic and architectural practice, lead to a renewed vision. Michelangelo appears as a practitioner struggling with the same difficulties as his contemporaries to win a competition and take away an order, to convince his sponsor of the validity of its plastic or functional solutions, to meet his professional commitments, to finally reconcile his thirst for honor, dignity and freedom with the need to work for a living. To the romantic vision of the Saturnian genius still flourishing in the books of great diffusion is gradually replacing the image, which does not diminish it in any way, of a man caught in a multiplicity of dialectical relations, reacting to the constraints imposed by his material, the place where he works and builds, elements built or painted before his intervention, the financial resources of the promoters of the enterprise and the inconstancy of their intentions. As Raphael , to whom he has been systematically opposed in his style as in his character, Michelangelo has shown a prodigious spirit of assimilation (“It was enough for him to see once the work of another to retain it perfectly and use it occasionally without anyone noticing it, “says Vasari) and a great sense of adaptation to demand, evidence of the deep and deep intelligence that he have recognized his most enlightened contemporaries.