Friday, April 14, 2006

place Louvois

This is the little garden opposite the other library I work in, when I want to look at maps, engravings, and manuscripts, or when I want to work somewhere beautiful and restorative for the soul unlike the main library at Tolbiac, which I heard someone call the HLM de Mitterand today, although it's really not that bad in its own way. Still, a library with opposite a park, with nineteenth century industrial clocks, a pneumatic tube system, and chestnut trees? Chestnut trees are good for the soul. As are tulips.

Also, this is a garden with plenty of foresight. There are instructions in case of tempests.

One of the few real parks in the 2e arrondissement, this space was the site of Paris’ 9th opera house, razed to the ground to obliterate the scene of the politically-motivated murder of the son of the future king Charles X. Now it is dominated by a fountain designed by Visconti, sculpted by Klagmann, and commissioned by Louis-Philippe of France, which has three female figures at the top representing the four major rivers of France: the Seine, the Garonne, the Loire and the Saône.

The fountain was set up in 1844 but the space was transformed into a square only in 1859, by the great and megalomaniac Baron Haussmann.

It has putti. Very well-sheltered putti, who have been given first-rate flying fish, even if this one looks a little squinchy.
My eyes almost hurt from how buttery yellow these tulips were. That's probably healthy after a day in the dusty art-manuscript room on the very top of the library. I brought some home later that day (from a shop on rue Montorgueil, not from the park, helas).

63 Comments:

Blogger mmf! said...

If anyone has advice for getting rid of spambots, let me know. I have been getting comments from the same very obnoxious one for months now.

Thanks.

4:41 AM  
Anonymous dbv said...

with movable type (which is what the future of the book uses) there are plugins you can install (which is a great deal of work) that seem to take care of most of it, though it does seem that there's an evolutionary war going on between the spambots & the antispam pluginsm of which civilized conversation will certainly be the loser.

(my thing uses wordpress and that doesn't seem to attract very much spam-attention, but i think that might simply be security through obscurity?)

but! "helas" is such a nice word. that's what i was going to say. and thanks for reminding me of the storm-closed garden.

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Blogger mmf! said...

it's like the bot heard us talking.
(2 more comments i am about to delete)

thanks, i'll look into plug-ins.

i'm glad the garden brought you memories...

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