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It's a well-known fact that Paris is a hub for artists, with the likes of Pablo Picasso, Michelangelo and Monet gracing the walls of several museums in the city. In Vitry-Sur-Seine, a southeastern suburb of Paris, street artists are putting up their own masterpieces on public and private buildings, using the entire city as their endless canvas to display their thought-provoking work. During a tour of France, you should definitely make a side trip to this small neighborhood and keep your eyes open for the impressive works.
Artists to watch out for
Christian Guemy, who's known in the street art scene simply as C215, creates elaborate stenciled portraits of men, women and children from cultures around the world. Using spray paint and the occasional brush, Guemy produces numerous replicas of his work throughout the streets of Paris. In an interview with FatCap, Guemy explained why he chose to pursue stencil art above all other mediums.
"The stencil allows me to combine my passion for drawing and that of graffiti," said Guemy. "It is so good to affix in a street the work of several days in a few minutes and without any necessary authorization."
Guemy's collaborators include Indigo, who originally hails from Vancouver, Canada, and has produced stunning art pieces around the world. Similar to Guemy, Indigo prefers to work in public spaces while raising awareness about social issues through her medium. Her pieces typically capture singular moments in time, such as a woman whose hair billows with a gust of wind, or people waiting for the train.
Contained art at the Val-de-Marne Museum of Contemporary Art
If you want to get a better idea of what's going on in the contemporary art world during a France tour, you can go to the Val-de-Marne Museum of Contemporary Art, which presents a fully encompassing representation of today's provocative artists and designers. Current exhibitions include Presentation, where fridges are decorated with tiny glass mirrors and look more like skyscrapers than the household appliance. The installation provides a commentary on mass consumption, using the concept of fridges as a representation for how much mankind has hoarded to create modern metropolises.
Whether you take to the streets in search of the newest graffiti or go to the contemporary museums in Vitry-Sur-Seine, France tours will give you the opportunity to get in touch with some of the latest and most profound artwork in the world.
Look down in wonder at Buckingham Palace, the Palace of Westminster and St Paul’s Cathedral from your glass-walled pod on the London Eye, then gaze out over the Louvre and the Champs-Elysees from the top of the Eiffel Tower.
The scent of rich pine forests lingers in the breeze as the 13th-century ruins of Turaida Castle are revealed before your eyes in the lush Gauja River valley in a medieval sanctuary untouched by the march of time.
The aroma of dark roasted Viennese coffee hangs thick in the air as you tread the cobblestone laneways and bask in the elegant architecture, atmospheric cafes and refined restaurants in one of the most beautiful cities in Eastern Europe.
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