On the first Sunday of the month, you can enter Paris’ national museums for free.
We – my mum, Signor Lu and me – chose to visit the Centre Pompidou, that odd-looking building that dares to be different by wearing pipes and escalators on the outside.
The museum displays modern and contemporary art.
We skipped the popular modernists (Picasso, Kandinsky, etc.) and concentrated on the permanent contemporary collection.
I can only tolerate looking at works of art for about one hour. After that, everything becomes a bit of a blur.
Signor Lu is the opposite (as are many Italians). He will happily scrutinise every work in a museum’s collection, at a very leisurely pace.
The Contemporary collection suited us because it’s neither too big nor too small. The works are varied, too.
But do they represent the apotheosis of Contemporary European art? Are they achingly “now”?
(For thoughtful writing on contemporary art, I recommend the blog artdoesmatter.)
I can only say that the experience was visually satisfying and that the following works were amongst my favourites:
A large mosaic of colourful felt shapes.
A room full of figures made of aluminium foil, all bowing.
The atmosphere at the Pompidou on a free Sunday in April was relaxed and easy (It seemed to be different for the temporary exhibition(s), which were not free.) To me, that says something about contemporary culture.
And the area was a desert as far as street performers were concerned. The research I’d done said they would be there. But they weren’t. It was Sunday, the sun was out and it was past noon. What more do street performers want?
Maybe they were making their own statement about contemporary culture.