News for the week of April 29

Letter from France

Susan and I arrived in Paris last Monday morning and on Wednesday we went to the Musée Jacquemart-André to see the Mary Cassatt exhibition.

The space itself, the museum, is in the former home of the J-A family and it's pretty clear they had a keen eye for art and style, at least in 19th century terms. Our only complaint was the interpretative signage and narrative was in French only. While the paintings certainly spoke for themselves, we thought that considering Cassatt was an American bi-lingual signage would've been more appropriate. 

The museum is located at 158 Boulevard Haussmann, 75008.

How well do you know Paris? Today we look at the 18th arrondissement.


1. What artist is the creator of the curious Passe-Muraille, a sculpture that seems to emerge from one pf the walls of the place Marcel-Aymé?

A. César.
B. Jean Marais.
C. Jean Dubuffet.

2. Why is the stone of the Sacré-Coeur Basilica still so white, in spite of pollution and bad weather?

A. Because it is cleaned every week.
B. Because the height of the hill puts it outside of the range of exhaust fumes.
C. Because the limestone from which it is made whitens with even the slightest rain.

3. To what divinity was the temple standing on the Montmartre hill, then isolated from the city, dedicated in Gallo-Roman times?

A. Mercury.
B. Jupiter.
C. Mars.

4. When did the hill of Montmartre first go back to its wine-producing past by replanting vines on its slopes?

A. 1933.
B. 1955.
C. 1978.

5. To what painter do we owe the painting titled Le Moulin de la Galette?

A. Édouard Manet.
B. Auguste Renoir.
C. Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.

Answers can be found at the end of the newsletter.

Travel in France: Barge cruising on your own

Answers: 1. B, Jean Marais; 2. C, the limestone; 3. A & C, Mercury and Mars; 4. A, 1933; 5. B, Renoir.