I’m back from the wonderful city of Paris, and I had such an amazing time as the nominee for Canson North America to their annual Prix Canson. The Prix Canson aims to discover and support the work of artists through their Fund for Art and Paper. While I didn’t win the prix – that honor was given to Ronald Cornelissen – I was honored and excited to be one of 37 international artists who were nominated. There was an award ceremony and beautiful reception at the Louvre on June 9, and on June 8 there was an opening reception for an exhibit of the artist’s work at the Hotel de Sauroy in the 3rd arrondisement of Paris.
Many thanks to Robert Toth and Kimberly Bolduc of Canson for the nomination. Also thanks to Catherine Barthe of Canson who arranged everything. What a great experience!
Below, some pictures:
The Hotel de Sauroy, where the exhibition was held.
Here I am, with my work for the exhibit.
Some friends showed up to the opening as well:
Gudrun Cram Drach came with her husband Matt. We were students together years ago – it was great to see her there!
It was nice to see Lapin, the French illustrator and fellow Urban Sketcher as well. We all went out for dinner after the opening,
you can see his drawing of all of us at The Cafe Rouge on his blog, here.
The next day Neil and I slept late, and joined my parents at the Tuileries for a little relaxation before the event at the Louvre that evening. While sipping a cafe au lait, I drew some Parisian women enjoying the same:
That evening was the reception at the Louvre. There were about 500 people there, and they broke us up into smaller groups for a private tour of the galleries of the Louvre, leading to the exhibit of Canson papers that is in the Chapel room through September. It was magical. There was champagne and violins, literally, as we walked through the museum. In the Puget Gallery, my favorite, a cellist played softly while the tour guide explained to us the history of the sculptures in the gallery. Wonderful.
Below are a few pictures from the event:
At the Louvre event, with Robert Toth of Canson and Michael Ippolito of Utrecht.
With Marlise van der Jagt, curator of the Hotel de Sauroy exhibit.
This photo, and the two below, are of my section of the slide presentation of the 37 nominees at the Louvre event.
I cried when I saw them – what a thrill to see my drawings at the Louvre, and I just sat and thought about where I was
when I drew them, and what I was thinking and feeling. Wonderful moment for me as an artist.
A drawing of the Tour de France, that I made when I was there with my Dalvero class.
A drawing of Grand Central Station, that I made for the Brooks Brothers campaign.
To make the evening even more special, Neil and my parents were there to share it with me.
Of course, even though we only were in Paris for a few days, I did get out and make a few drawings. How do you not? It really is, in my opinion, the most beautiful city in the world. And this is coming from a die-hard New York City fan. I still love NYC the most, for it’s energy, diversity and excitement, but you can’t beat Paris for the romantic beauty of it’s architecture. I love the wrought iron balconies everywhere, and the baroque decorativeness on the limestone buildings. It’s made for pen and ink drawing – the feel of the ink curving through all that decoration is heavenly. We stayed near the Paris Opera House, that tabernacle of baroquity (is that a word?) so I spent some time one afternoon making a drawing of it:
While I was drawing, a man and his teenaged son stopped to watch for a while. He then said to me, “Tres Bien!” with his strong American accent, and I said, “Merci!” back to him with mine. After a minute or so, I asked him, “Where are you from?” To which he replied that they were from Ohio. When I told him that I was from New York City, he got starry eyed and insisted that I go to Carnegie Deli and have a pastrami sandwich for him when I returned. The lure of the pastrami crosses the Atlantic! : )
Our last night in Paris, Neil, my parents and I decided to have dinner in the Île de la Cité, and we stopped for a while by the Seine, where I made this sunset drawing:
I didn’t want to leave Paris, it was such a once in a lifetime experience. But, I will be back again, hopefully soon, to that gorgeous city on the river in France.