Things change. Nothing remains the same. The wrinkles on my face show me that every time I look at myself in the mirror. Daily.
An ironstone water pitcher, once a practical part of the bathroom or bedroom nightstand. Then indoor plumbing and the faucet came along, with its ever running source, hot and cold. Things change, the water pitcher can still be used as such, but most likely it will not be used that way again.
The other day while at the brocante I saw this painting. A few months ago I would not have noticed it. Blame it on Cassis. The stretch from one style to another, from 18th century portraits to abstracts has been the biggest change in my repertoire of collecting.
How did it happen? How does anything happen? Gradual influence: An open door that invited me in, appreciating what I saw others doing (mixing it up), the change of color-scapes, not following rules, letting it speak to me even if I did not understand, and most of all giving it a try.
I bought the painting and sold it. Because that is what I do.
This is the kitchen in Cassis with a sitting room in back, (sliding doors can close it off to be an extra bedroom) the stairs going up to the living room are on the right of the kitchen.
The change was challenging for me, as I had never done anything "modern" before, and now, I am completely gaga over it.
And yet that which I love about France...
The art history of life.
The artistic way to explore amongst the old beauties.
The everyday, run of the mill, things that stare me in the face that I barely notice them. Objects that are so much the fabric of France that they are like the water running from the faucet, the foundation underfoot, the air I breath. They often go unnoticed, simply because they are... they have been, and I assume will be here forever unchanged.
Stones steps that lead away from the center of the village. Stone steps that are impractical but have not been replaced by cement steps, or worse pavement, or worse widen to make a road.
Majolica and stone. Instead of plaster board or cement.
with classified ingredients and strict rules to keep it that way.
Tiles that have not been changed, even when they didn't match the new furniture of 1900s or of the 1950s, nor of 1970, or even when the 1990s rolled in.... it has stayed the same.
that burn brightly even when it was more complicated to convert them into electric lamps.
that have stood strong, even under heavy bombing and train tracks rolling by.
that have not been enlarged, and doors that have not been changed. Amazing how the French keep their history alive, how they make it live anew by letting it be.
The French bistro... nothing changed (except the cigarette smoke) not the chairs, nor the bistro tables, or the zinc bar nor the mirror in the background.
A year ago I wrote: "I showed French Husband some of the images I had been collecting, "Like this one, you see, it is just about the colors, though I really like the oversized art piece, you know the apartment (Cassis) is small but the walls are large, so I was thinking..." as I talked I thought he wasn't listening, or more so, not understanding, but actually French Husband was wondering silently out loud,
"She has gone off the deep end."
The deep end he hoped I would dip into.
(Recent painting I bought at the brocante.)
And there I was swimming in Cassis wondering could I really go modern?
I had my doubts.
But the current took me there.
I bought the painting, and Yann was thrilled.
What happens when you take an old piece and give it a modern twist?
What happens when the old things you love invite you to see them in a new way. What happens when creativity guides you, and history allows itself to be reinvented?
These Louis Sixteenth style chairs have had the back medallion removed and Plexiglass added. The seats are reupholstered in silk-velvet, bold colored stripe fabric.
Beautiful life, that allows us to explore and recreate.