No. 1 #birdofparadise featured in architectural firm’s ad campaign

Architecture, Press

No. 1 #birdofparadise, is featured in the ad campaign "Shelter" by architectural firm ARCH11 and published in Modern in Denver magazine.

Architectural firm ARCH11 features No. 1 #birdofparadise

In the black and white analog photo series #birdofparadise, I imagine a paradise where recovering the voluptuousness of flight proper to creation is the greatest desire.

Photograph No. 1 from #birdofparadise, was featured in the 2020 ad campaign “Shelter” by Denver architectural firm ARCH11.  A half-page advertisement was published in the Spring 2020 issue of Modern in Denver magazine.

Modern in Denver, USA. (Spring 2020) p. 39.

A Tale of Two Vineyards

Articles, Blog article

A bottle of Three Feathers Estate Pinot Noir perched on a vineyard wall with the town Saint-Emilion in the background, Bordeaux region, Gironde, France.
Three Feathers Estate Pinot Noir perched on a vineyard wall in Saint-Emilion.
Three Feathers Blanc de Noirs on the stele of Chateau-Pavie-Macquin

The adventure started with a neighborly “getting to know you” over coffee in our Normand vacation home, English Channel in the distance.  A dear girlfriend wished to introduce me to two childhood friends of hers, sisters, living in Normandy and vacationing in Bordeaux: “They make wine and so do you, so it should be fun to meetup!” she said, and without further ado, we did. 

Our Normand Shire, Cotentin, France.

In our small home in the Shire (as we have nicknamed our seaside village next to Cherbourg), two worlds connected in coincidental ways; American and French, Bordeaux and Burgundy….  We met Agnès and Cécile Corre, sisters and partners in the family-owned domain of Château Pavie-Macquin in Saint-Emilion and they brought over an extraordinary bottle of their 2006 Château Pavie-Macquin 1er Grand Cru Classé as a hostess gift for dinner.  Mutual plans were laid to sally forth and explore unknown lands with this bunch of merry women.

In the summer of 2017, Agnès traveled to Oregon with her children to visit family in Eugene and made a long detour to Three Feathers on Chehalem Mountains.  Agnès was impressed with our endeavors at Three Feathers, called them “pioneering”, and said our story was reminiscent of her grandparent’s challenges at Château Pavie-Macquin.  Over a glass of 2016 Three Feathers Pinot Noir in the formal topiary garden, we celebrated our first bottled vintage, shared vineyard lore and discussed terroirs in general knowing full well that Bordeaux and Burgundy are like apples and oranges, not to mention Bordeaux and Oregon Pinot Noir!  

Portrait of Albert Macquin in the family home

Agnès knows all about pioneering. Her great-grandfather Albert Macquin (1852-1911), who purchased about 64 acres from various châteaux in Saint-Emilion from 1887, is famous for saving his own vineyard, as well as that of the entire Bordeaux region, from the devastating vine disease phylloxera that had been wreaking havoc since 1866. Agricultural engineer, Macquin was aware of new techniques involving grafting the phlloxera resistant Vitis labrusca American rootstock onto Vitis vinifera vines.  While other châteaux were looking to cure the infected vines, Macquin proceeded to replant his entire vineyard with more resistant rootstock and was able to rebound quickly from the phylloxera epidemic that was crippling the Bordeaux wine industry. Albert Macquin is hailed as a man of transformation and reconstruction, advocating Vitis berlandieri which is less susceptible to chlorosis – he produced more than 1 million plants in 1887 – and developing scientific vine plot monitoring.

Albert MACQUIN – Saint Emilion owes him the use of the grafted plant which was to save the vineyard ruined by phylloxera

The phylloxera story is a cross-viticultural one that intimately links France and the United States from a rootstock perspective.  Exchange between France and the Oregon is at the root of vine planting in this State since the mid-1800’s when early Oregon vineyards were planted on their own roots, before the arrival of phylloxera, by European settlers. This contrasts with European vineyards, where all wine grapes have been necessarily grafted onto Phylloxera-resistant rootstocks since the nineteenth century. Since phylloxera was discovered in Oregon in 1990, most new vineyards have been planted on phylloxera-resistant rootstocks.  Agricultural engineers without borders, in true botanical spirit, have been sharing, comparing, grafting and testing since ocean transportation made it possible way back when.

We decided to schedule a long detour from Paris to Bordeaux to check out the illustrious Château Pavie-Macquin and in the fall of 2019, just after harvest, our schedules coincided and a date was set.  While selecting a couple of bottles (our 2017 Three Feathers Pinot Noir and 2018 Blanc de Noirs) to bring down with us, the daunting prospect of proposing our wines to taste in a region of such historical reputation began to make itself felt. In anticipation, I boned up on Bordeaux and Burgundy – since, just like Burgundy wine, the Pinot Noirs produced in the Oregon Willamette Valley are single varietals – and learned some interesting things.

Recognized for their fineness and elegance, only cuvées from the same grape are blended to make Burgundy wines; Pinot Noir for reds from northern Burgundy, Gamay from the Macon and Beaujolais regions.  Bordeaux wines (powerful and robust) derive their richness and complexity from savvy multi-varietal blending of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet France, but also in smaller quantities Petit Verdot and Malbec for the reds.

1995 Magnum on display in the tasting room of Château Pavie Macquin.

Why are Bordeaux and Burgundy bottles shaped differently… and why are wine bottles made to contain 75 centiliters?

In the 18thcentury the city of Bordeaux flourished through maritime trade with the colonial world of the time.  Back then, wine bottles did not have a standardized shape and their capacity depended on the manufacturers, making the job of commerce quite confusing. English traders based in Bordeaux had the idea of fixing their capacity at 75 cl to facilitate the calculation of barrels to bottles; a Bordeaux barrel making 225 liters, or 50 gallons, contains therefore 300 bottles and one gallon is equivalent to 6 bottles.  An English innovation that has imposed itself over time to become a mandatory European standard, with a few exceptions.

The English also invented the dark glass bottles and cork stoppers to better preserve the wine.  For exporting Bordeaux overseas, the angled bottles were cut to measure in order to be efficiently stored in the holds of boats. The elbow of the Bordeaux bottle was conceived to prevent the lees of the wine (yeast deposit at the bottom of the bottle) from running out when pouring.

Contrastingly, Burgundians maintain their own traditions – making “pieces”, as they are called – not “barrels”, of 228 liters (300 bottles).  Their king grape varieties, focused on the fruit, are aged in gently sloping bottles, aerodynamic and feminine.  Burgundy vineyards are delimited by “Clos” whereas Bordeaux vineyards are identified by “Castles”.  This tradition dates back to the Middle Ages when the monks in charge of cultivating the vines for the Bishopric surrounded the rows that gave the best wines by small stone walls.  Those areas became the Clos, of which the walls of Clos Vougeot are still visible today.

The town of Saint-Emilion seen from the King’s Tower, Gironde, France
Overview of the the rock-carved sanctuary, or Monolith, carved out in the 11th century, Place du Marche, Saint-Emilion, Gironde, France.
Collegiale Church of Saint-Emilion at sunset, Gironde, France.

Saint-Emilion is a very beautiful and impressive town with an exceptional 12th century gothic church, the Église Collégiale, and a spectacular monolithic church of gigantic proportions (38 meters long and 12 meters high).  The weather was sparkling and the tourist population was not at its peak, so we were able to stroll around and take photographs without interference.  I was impressed by the careful preservation of the buildings, steep cobblestone passageways and the Middle Ages / Tolkien feeling of it all. 

Family home at The Oaks of Macquin, part of Wine Estate Chateau Pavie Macquin.

We stayed with the Corre sisters in their ancestral home located on Les Chênes de Macquin (The Oaks of Macquin) vineyard, the second wine produced by Château Pavie-Macquin.  The traditional Bordelaise architecture of this stone edifice combined with its aging natural state made the experience all the more profound. A sunrise walk revealed golden rows of vines and a large heap of pressed grapes left over from harvest waiting to be retrieved for recycling. 

Sunrise over The Oaks of Macquin, part of Wine Estate Château Pavie Macquin.
Tractor and leftover pressed grapes at The Oaks of Macquin, part of Wine Estate Château Pavie Macquin.

After breakfast we headed off to visit the vineyards of Pavie-Macquin, situated on the highest and most prominent plateau of Saint-Emilion.  Encompassing 37 acres (15 hectares), average production of Pavie-Macquin is around 65,000 bottles for each vintage (primarily exported to the United States) – a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. 

Century oak trees at the Wine Estate Château Pavie Macquin.

The impressive hundred-year-old oak trees that border the property are visible from afar as are the vineyards clearly visible from the town of Saint-Emilion, within walking distance from the Château.  The “Château” is very modest compared to some, in the form of the original Bordelaise house recently renovated with a modern tasting room and accompanying apartment for guests.  

Château Pavie Macquin in Saint-Émilion.

Our visit coincided with the winding down of the harvest and most of the exterior activity had ceased to be replaced by vat work indoors.  Plans to increase the size of the wine production facility are in view, including the replacement of the oak vats for modern concrete ones.  Longtime manager Nicolas Thienpont and consulting oenologist Stéphane Derenoncourt are refining and modernizing the Château with new wine making techniques. We ate lunch in a lovely and functional new kitchen facility built next to the winery for the workers and decided to dine that evening in town.

Portrait next to the stele of Chateau-Pavie-Macquin

Visiting Pavie-Macquin with Agnès and Cécile Corre was a moving experience.  The vineyard setting and backdrop are not only noble but familiar and accessible on a human-scale.  The pioneering heritage of Albert Macquin shines through to this day with an eminence and humility right down to the crest that is their logo: two oaks leaves in honor of the hundred-year-old oaks on the property and a hangman’s noose in reminder of the dangers of excess.  (Agnès told me that an earlier version displaying three nooses and one oak leaf was modified by her grandmother who found the triple noose much too sinister!)

Wine labels for Château Pavie Macquin, Saint Emilion.

My tale ends with five of us at L’Envers du Décor (appropriately, Behind the Scenes) around a bottle of Château Pavie-Macquin 1er Grand Cru Classé and a bottle of Three Feathers Oregon Pinot Noir.  If you have ever had the chance to taste the former, you will know that it is an unforgettable experience from beginning to end.  A deep and complex nose, fruity and robust on the palate, long in the finish.  Having recuperated from the emotion of that bottle and commentary subsided, I served a round of Three Feathers Pinot Noir and waited in silence.

Primarily Bordeaux Pavie-Macquin drinkers, Agnès and Cécile raised their eyebrows and Agnès smiled.  She said that the wine had really evolved well since the 2016 vintage but felt that it needed to open up more in the glass.  I served her some more. Cécile drank her taste more quickly and said that it didn’t quite have the depth of a Bordeaux, but that it merited coming back to.  I served her some more and she did. The conversation continued about our wine and I felt myself relaxing. Where there is fire (conversation), there is a flame (spark) and if our Oregon Pinot Noir was good enough to set off a positive and constructive discussion with Pavie-Macquin drinkers, I could feel proud.

Elise Prudhomme with a bottle of 2017 Three Feathers Pinot Noir at L’Envers du Decor, Saint-Emilion.
Agnès Corre grabbing a few bottles of wine at Château Pavie Macquin.

While Pavie-Macquin and Three Feathers are like apples and oranges, a common point can be found in the passion transmitted when talking about our wines and the constant search of solutions to extract the best for our vineyards from the climate and the best juice for our wines from the terroir: rich, elegant and unique.


Lieux-dits | Elise Prudhomme at Studio Galerie B&B

Articles, Blog article, Exhibitions, Texts

Black and white photograph of the moat and enivrons at Château de Tanlay, Burgundy, France.  Analog photography series entitled Lieux-dits by Elise Prudhomme.
Black and white photograph of succulents in a minimalist style kitchen using house plants for interior decoration. The family Cactaceae in Karlsruhe, Germany.  Analog photography series entitled Lieux-dits by Elise Prudhomme.
Succulents, Karlsruhe, Germany.

5 – 17 November 2019

OPENING Tuesday 5 November at 6 pm
GALLERY HOURS : Tuesday – Friday from 3 – 7 pm, Saturday & Sunday from 2 – 7 pm

Lieux-dits [Said Places] | Elise Prudhomme

Photographic author, Elise Prudhomme, uses her many cameras to explore the possibilities and limits of the medium. Her subject matter varies from Landscape, Portraits or Interior Spaces but throughout there is a humor, irony and an appreciation of the surreal.

Her latest exhibition is Lieux-dits. This is a French toponymic term that literally translates as “Said Places”. It refers to small geographical locations that bear traditional names often based on some characteristic of the place, its former use, or a past event. These photographs represent events as well as places, as in a memoir. One single shot was not enough to express the feeling engendered by the locale. Through a creative use of multiple perspectives and points of view to generate diverse reference points, the emotions associated with these toponyms are anchored in memory.

Photographe auteur, Élise Prudhomme explore des procédés créatifs de photographie depuis la prise de vue jusqu’au tirage. La matérialisation d’idées sur un support sensible inspire le traitement du sujet qu’il s’agisse d’un espace intérieur, d’un paysage ou d’un portrait. Intéressée par la capacité des appareils analogue ou numériques à capturer l’espace et créer l’illusion, elle maîtrise le medium dans l’expression surréaliste de son environnement.

Dans sa série Lieux-dits, la photographe Elise Prudhomme nous fait partager des moments de sa vie quotidienne.  Elle raconte de courtes histoires à travers des superpositions d’images.  Ses photographies panoramiques révèlent de multiples perspectives prises de différents points de vue qui ancrent dans la mémoire les émotions ressenties. L’esprit du lieu prime sur la perception visuelle, évoquant les rencontres, les  évènements vécus, et les lumières qui composent ces lieux-dits.

Logo du festival Les Rencontres Photographiques du 10eme Paris
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Nourishing Ground : the Buzz about Dirt

Articles, Blog article

Multi-colored Swiss Chard growing in the Sensitive Zone, Urban Farme of Saint-Denis.
Multi-colored Swiss Chard growing at the Sensitive Zone.

Nourishing Ground : the Buzz about Dirt


Although vegetables were grown in the plains of Seine-Saint-Denis since at least the 12th century, by the 18th century this region had become the principal garden source for the increasing urban population of Paris.

Postcard of vegetable farmers in Seine-Saint-Denis

An interesting article published by the Seine-Saint-Denis Tourist Office with the Circle of Historical Studies and Research of Bobigny traces the history of vegetable farming since the 1800’s based on statistical registers of the period. At that time, the soil of Saint-Denis, Courneuve and Bobigny in the Ile-de-France region was one of the best in the country.  The registers indicate that for a total farmed surface of 1,850 acres, 1,330 acres were dedicated to vegetable crops.  Potatoes, cabbage, onions, salsify and turnips replaced large-scale farming (wheat, rye, oats, alfalfa and beets) from 1820 and large-scale cultivation roads were re-adapted with paving for market carts to make their daily route to and from the famous Les Halles market located in the center of Paris.  

Thanks to naturally humid earth, this nourishing ground was baptized the “Plain of Virtues”.  The word “virtue” referred to large vegetables grown in open fields; Milanese green cabbages with curly leaves “Large of the Virtues”, so different from the classic variety, salsify and oval-shaped onions “Straw of the Virtues” which made the reputation of vegetable producers from that period. 

These particular vegetables were raised with urban fertilizers which came mainly from the removal of mud and slush from Saint-Denis, but also from Paris to which was added horse and cow manure.  In 1912, it is reported that 80,000 horses in Paris produced 344,000 tons of manure: the endless production of manure and sludge (plant, earth residues and garbage) collected from Parisian streets was a rich source of organic matter for neighboring regions and evidently produced excellent vegetables.

Postcard showing cultivated fields in the “Plain of Virtues”

The considerable success of vegetable production in Ile-de-France is also attributed to the use of large glass bells which protected salads and vegetables with very good yields. It has been said that in 1914, the moon shining bright on six million glass bells from surrounding Ile-de-France vegetable farms enabled German airmen to spot Paris at a distance.

Although the farming population decreased during the First World War and afterwards, production remained at a good level until after the Second World War when urban development campaigns were launched which required land for buildings and transportation. 


René Kersanté’s farm in 1940. Photograph displayed in the museum of the Open Farm of Saint-Denis.

In the 1920s, René Kersanté’s grandmother arrived from native Brittany and began working as a gardener in Saint-Denis.  She eventually created her own farm, delivering salads to Paris regularly, which pursued its mission despite rampant urbanization and industrialization, producing up to 500,000 salads a year with forty workers.  René joined the family enterprise in 1965, while tall housing complexes continued to grow like mushrooms around the 9-acre farm managed by the Kersanté family.

In 1983, under pressure by urban developers but still pursuing the salad production for sale to larger scale markets and supermarkets, René Kersanté received a helping hand from Mayor of Saint-Denis who incited the local government to buy the farm and decree that the land shall not be built upon.  René retired in 2016 and the city issued a call for projects.

Enjoying the fanfare, retired vegetable farmer René Kersanté poses under the disco ball in the greenhouse of the Sensitive Zone.


Despite the forecast of heavy rain, Ile-de-France Regional Council President Valérie Pécresse, accompanied by special delegates and local government officials, cut the ribbon in celebration of an unusual and elaborate tribute to agriculture. The official inauguration of the “Urban Farm of Saint-Denis” in the Parisian region of Seine-Saint-Denis on May 11, 2019 ended with a fanfare organized by the Sensitive Zone project.

President of the IDF region (Valérie Pécresse) cuts the ribbon to inaugurate the Urban Farm of Saint-Denis with Saint-Denis Mayor (Laurent Russier – holding ribbon left) and President of the Departmental Council of Seine-Saint-Denis (Stéphane Troussel – holding ribbon right).

Today, the “Urban Farm of Saint-Denis” is composed of the two winning projects: the Sensitive Zone (run by artist’s collective The Poetic PartyParti poétique) – a 2.5-acre farm in permaculture around a project “nature-culture-food” and a cultural program, and the Open Farm of Saint-Denis (run by Gally Farms) – an educational and heritage farm including animals. 

Both projects propose a hands-on transmission of knowledge about gardening and farming practices; however they diverge in the techniques employed. 

View from the Sensitive Zone looking out towards Saint-Denis.

The Sensitive Zone is directed by artist-beekeeper Olivier Darné, founder of The Poetic Party and the Concrete Honey label (Miel Béton), producing honey in the Saint-Denis area.   Darné is working with Alain Ducasse and other culinary experts on a cooking school and restaurant to be constructed next to the farm which will source the 130 different vegetables farmed using the permaculture method. 

Guest speaker Gilles Clement at the Sensitive Zone on 6 April 2019.

Darné stresses the importance of eating well and food as culture, inviting guest speakers such as renowned landscape architect and gardener Gilles Clement (on the theme “The Garden as a Political Space”) and philosopher Bernard Steigler (on the theme “The Belly as a Political Space”) to share their knowledge and insight on the theme nature – culture – food. Additionally, a weekly cultural program of music, culinary activities and artists in residence / exhibitions, incites visitors to partake in events and volunteer in the garden.  Albeit complex, the Sensitive Zone project is cleverly constructed and attractively packaged around word play and trending subjects. 

The Open Farm, run by brothers Xavier and Dominique Laureau of Gally Farms, proposes local and old varieties of vegetables originally farmed in the area alongside events and awareness workshops, corporate meeting space, apprenticeships, arboriculture and an exhibition on gardening heritage. Visitors learn about both traditional and modern farming techniques, including hydroponics, and the history of farming in the Seine-Saint-Denis area at the museum. 

Educational materials displayed at the Open Farm of Saint-Denis

Children can visit the farm animals and learn how to make bread; adults can reserve a learning session about gardening with glass bells or shop for vegetables at the boutique.  Family-oriented around traditional activities, the Open Farm presents a solid knowledge base about regional history and gardening while expressing a militant stance on industrial agriculture. 

Situated right in the heart of the “sensitive zone” of Seine-Saint-Denis, a high-density neighborhood where turmoil regularly breaks out between local inhabitants of the surrounding housing complexes, this 9-acre nourishing ground harboring beehives, farm animals, a museum, outdoor art exhibitions, greenhouses and a variety of farmed gardens, is food for the soul.

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Hermione, Freedom’s Frigate, Redefining Past and Future

Articles, Blog article

Replica of French frigate l'Hermione docked in the Port of Cherbourg, Normandy, France during the Normandy Liberty tour May 2019.
Replica of French frigate l’Hermione docked in the Port of Cherbourg, Normandy, France during the Normandy Liberty tour May 2019.

Hermione, Freedom’s Frigate, Redefining Past and Future

In 1778, the Corderie Royale in Rochefort, France, undertook the 11-month construction of a 26 cannon light frigate measuring 210 feet from stern to bow. Part of a group of four (along with the Concorde, the Courageuse and the Fée), the Hermione was built according to plans by Chevillard Aîné and commanded by major general La Fayette who boarded the ship on March 21, 1780 to meet General Washington in Boston and give help to American insurgents.

In 1997, the Hermione-La Fayette Association undertook the daunting project of a 17-year construction of a replica of the 18th century Concorde class frigate, Hermione, at the restored arsenal the Corderie Royale in Rochefort, France.

American born and raised, married to a Frenchman passionate about frigates and naval engineering, the Hermione reconstruction project and ambitious plan to retrace the steps of General La Fayette by sailing to America was of great interest to us. My husband and I planned a trip to Rochefort in 2009 to visit the construction site.

L’Hermione, a replica of the frigate Lafayette sailed in 1780 to join George Washington, under construction in Rochefort, France

We were amazed by this courageous endeavor to rebuild a warship that existed more than 200 years previously in it’s identical form and structure. While my husband is well versed in model ship building, this 26-cannon tall ship being built to scale 1:1 was a site to see! In 2009, they had not advanced far enough to use the three-tiered dry dock which was impressive in itself.

Years later, we followed the Hermione’s baptism (September 2014) and her symbolic journey to the United States, in La Fayette’s long expired wake. She arrived in Bodie Island, North Carolina on May 31, 2015 and has since made many voyages, stopping in ports such as the Old Port of Marseille in April 2018 where I happened to be visiting with friends.

Replica of French frigate l’Hermione docked in the Port of Marseille, France.

An early morning departure to the Island of Frioul found me well-positioned on a neighboring boat for some great shots of the Hermione docked in the Old Port of Marseille!

Replica of French frigate l’Hermione docked in the Port of Cherbourg, Normandy, France during the Normandy Liberty tour May 2019.

This year, 2019, marks the 75th Anniversary of D-Day, one of the highlights during the “Normandy Liberty” voyage organized by the Hermione-La Fayette Association to complete the ship’s visit of the Ports of France. In early May, the Hermione stayed at the Port of Cherbourg and I was able to see her again in the “flesh” and take a few shots with my large format pinhole camera.

Replica of French frigate l’Hermione docked in the Port of Cherbourg, Normandy, France taken with a large format pinhole camera.

Currently, the Hermione has joined other tall ships to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of the Rouen Armada and next weekend I will be strategically positioned along the banks of the Seine to witness these ships in full sail.

In the same year that we traveled to Rochefort to visit the Hermoine under construction, my husband purchased a wooden boat kit designed by naval architect François Vivier called the Youkou-Lili. This sail and oar boat is inspired by the Norwegian Faering (pointed end) and the American Swamscott dory (flat bottomed) and is a perfect boat for rowing in the sea.

Starting construction of the Youkou-Lili, a wooden boat designed by François Vivier.

After many years of making model boats, my husband was finally able to invest in a mid-scale project to produce a vessel that he could actually put in the sea! Dreaming of the larger scale Hermione, he spend many long weekends in Normandy sawing, gluing and hammering inside a makeshift greenhouse, the construction site of the Youkou-Lili… but that is another story.

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Lieux-dits | Opening night at Galerie B&B

Articles, Blog article, Exhibitions, Views

Images taken at opening night of the photography exhibition "Lieux-dits" by Elise Prudhomme at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris, France.

Exhibition opening of Lieux-dits at Studio Galerie B&B

I am so pleased to be exhibiting this new photographic series entitled “Lieux-dits” at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris, France.  Here are a few photos of the exhibition and opening and below is a video that shows the installation.

Wall space being limited, we will continue to change out different prints from the same series starting tomorrow night.  These large format pigment prints on Awagami paper are made from 6 x 18 cm film negatives and all effects are made “in camera”.

Installation vidéo

Exposition du 5 – 22 novembre 2018
Vernissage le mardi 6 novembre de 18h à 21h

Studio Galerie B&B
6 bis rue des Récollets – 75010 Paris

Herculean, Pharaonic and other Garden Superlatives


Tree ferns growing in the tropical greenhouse, Château du Champ de Bataille, Normandy, France.

Herculean, Pharaonic and other Garden Superlatives

One of the Seven Wonders, for which the specific location has never been established, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon are said to have contained a large variety of trees, shrubs and vines planted in tiers on raised terraces in an extraordinary feat of engineering.

While visiting the Remarkable Gardens (see other garden studies with this label) of the Château du Champ de Bataille, I drew a parallel with these mythical gardens, beginning with the symbolic notion that they are said to embody: The Seven Degrees of Creation from the Mineral, Vegetal, and Animal to Humanity, Conscience, Light and Spirit, in that order.

Jacques Garcia, renowned decorator, acquired the château in 1992. Working with landscape architect Patrick Pottier, they carried out the herculean task of conceiving and planting more than 240 acres of formal gardens consisting of groves, French parterres, boxwood topiary, basins, terraces, steps and fountains complimented by temples, theaters and sculptures. Hidden at the end of the garden is the “pièce de résistance” (flourish); a genuine 18th century Indian palace, reconstructed stone by stone, complete with an artificial lake: the Palace of Dreams. From the Material to the Immaterial, visitors pass from the earthly realm to the heavens in a pharaonic fanfare of fountains and greenery.

Overview of the water garden, Palace of Dreams, Chateau du Champ de Bataille, Normandy, France.

Contributing to the myth, it is believed that another famous gaze alighted on these gardens many years before; that of André Le Nôtre, architect of the Tuileries and Versailles gardens. An unforgotten sketch attributed to Le Nôtre shows the positioning of the Great Terrace, boxwood embroidery and bordering groves, as well as the proportions of the Squares of Diana and Apollo. These rare period features, similar to those of Vaux-le-Vicomte, have been restored in the current gardens.

Bordering groves of the Chateau du Champ de Bataille, Normandy, France.
Bordering groves of the Chateau du Champ de Bataille, Normandy, France.

A modest, but visibly dedicated quantity of gardeners oversea this creation which, one might assume, had evolved progressively throughout the history of the château. In reality, the château changed hands many times and underwent periods of restoration and but also neglect, even serving as a post-war prison camp and women’s prison. What was left of the structure and gardens at the time of Garcia’s purchase in 1992 required a significant overhaul in order to make it a period piece, including the excavation of over 1 million cubic meters of earth in order to arrive at the original ground levels of the 17th century.

The Babylonian aura surrounding this place; tales of a deep-pocketed Nebuchadnezzar and his wife Queen Amytis, romantic ideals of The Seven Degrees of Creation and legend of André Le Nôtre, was driven home on Patrimony Day when I witnessed the spectacle of the usually private garden greenhouses. Incredulous, I surrendered to Garden Superlatives.

Tropical greenhouse entrance, Château du Champ de Bataille, Normandy, France.
Tropical greenhouse entrance, Château du Champ de Bataille, Normandy, France.

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Lieux-dits [Said Places] | Exhibition at Galerie B&B

Articles, Blog article, Exhibitions, Texts

Exhibition announcement for the new analog photography series by Elise Prudhomme entitled Lieux-dits. Works from the series exhibited at Studio Galerie B&B.

Lieux-dits | New series exhibited at Studio Galerie B&B

Photographic author, I use a variety of analog and digital cameras to explore the possibilities and limits of the medium. While my choice of subject matter varies from Landscape, Portraits or Interior Spaces throughout there is a humor, irony and an appreciation of the surreal.

My latest series is titled “Lieux-dits”. This is a French toponymic term that literally translates as “Said Places”. It refers to small geographical locations that bear traditional names often based on some characteristic of the place, its former use, or a past event. These photographs represent events as well as places, as in a memoir. One single shot was not enough to express the feeling engendered by the locale. Through a creative use of multiple exposures to generate diverse reference points, the emotions associated with the “Lieux-dits” are anchored in memory.

Taken during travels, when my sensitivity to my surrounds was most acute, they relate tales of encounters, lights and foreign languages during an adventurous time in my life.

Lieux-dits | Nouvelle série exposée au Studio Galerie B&B

Photographe auteur,  j’explore des procédés créatifs de photographie depuis la prise de vue jusqu’au tirage. La matérialisation d’idées sur un support sensible inspire le traitement du sujet qu’il s’agisse d’un espace intérieur, d’un paysage ou d’un portrait. Intéressée par la capacité des appareils analogue ou numériques à capturer l’espace et créer l’illusion, je maîtrise le medium dans l’expression surréaliste de son environnement.

Lieux-dits sont de courtes histoires, des moments de vie quotidienne au cours desquels l’esprit du lieu, émotions ressenties à un endroit et non un temps donné, prime sur la perception visuelle qui généralement accompagne sa découverte. En voyage, quand le temps se prête à l’éveil des sens, ils évoquent des rencontres, des lumières et des langues étrangères vécus, avec le sentiment d’aventure.

A travers des superpositions complexes ce projet révèle de multiples amers venant ancrer les émotions associées à ces lieux de passage au sein de la mémoire.

Exposition du 5 – 22 novembre 2018
Vernissage le mardi 6 novembre de 18h à 21h

Studio Galerie B&B
6 bis rue des Récollets – 75010 Paris

A Woodworker’s Dream

Architecture, Articles, Blog article

Benoit Lechevallier starting the Ruston & Hornsby motor of Saint Gabriel Flour Mill.  Restoration of the Saint-Gabriel Flour Mill, Saint-Gabriel-Brecy, France.

A Woodworker’s Dream | Visiting the Saint Gabriel Flour Mill

Contemplating current trends in gluten-free bread, flour-less cakes and slow food, it was thought provoking to step back to post-war France and learn about technology and engineering during the industrial revolution.   This opportunity arose during a weekend visit to the town of Saint Gabriel de Brécy, Normandy.

The Saint Gabriel Flour Mill, now inscribed into the Industrial Patrimony of the Calvados region, is a magnificent example of a once-working flour mill that is being carefully restored by its owners.  Closed permanently in 1975, the mill was purchased in 2012 by Isabelle Laïlle and Benoît Lechevallier (carpenter/cabinet maker).  Isabelle and Benoît have rallied local inhabitants, many of whose family members once worked at the mill, to revive the memory of this working environment and an association has been created for this purpose.  The diverse professions of this group have enabled the successful restoration to impeccable working condition of a hydraulic turbine engine fabricated by Ruston & Hornsby (UK), of which only two remain in the world, regulated by a Watt Ball Regulator.

This Watt Ball Regulator monitors the flow of water entering the

Restoration of the 19th century Saint-Gabriel Flour Mill, Saint-Gabriel-Brecy, France

It is interesting to read in Flour Milling, A Theoretical and Practical Handbook of Flour Manufacture by Peter Kozmin (1917) that although flour milling in France during the eighteenth century was superior to other countries, milling techniques and industrial life in France following the French revolution and continental wars were stagnant compared to America and England.  When French industry revived, newer types of Anglo-American flour mills were adopted, many of which were built by English firms.

Kozmin goes on to say that the innovative Frenchman, however, had much to do about the industrial conception and design of their mills:  “But the vivacious and creative mind of the French was not satisfied in the further development of mill building with imitating the English and Americans. French engineers have introduced many original inventions, chiefly in the sphere of transportation, cleaning of grain, and dressing of the product.  In building their mills, they excelled in the beauty of architecture and proportionality of sizes.  One of the greatest inventions of the French of that time is the cleaner and separator, the most indispensable machine of the grain cleaning department. Doubtless the development of milling techniques pushed the question of perfecting the water wheel, adapted then almost exclusively in mills, to the front and it was Fourneyrond who produced the first turbine. This was of no less importance to the development of milling in France than was Watt’s steam engine in England.

After a private tour of all five floors of the Saint Gabriel Flour Mill it is evident that ingenuity, longevity, performance and design were all of part of the package in those days.  From the crushing equipment built with hearty pitch pine and cast iron in the workshops of H. & G. Rose brothers of Poissy, to the wooden plansifters, to the slanted flour shafts running five flours downwards at odd angles and mill machinery, the quality of fabrication “build to last” has insured the future of this mill as an example of industrial patrimony.

For a woodworker, the restoration of machinery made of noble materials to a workable state must be a real pleasure, not to mention the rhythmic sound of the turbine engine which currently provides full hydroelectric power to his home and to the mill’s secondary activity, a charming bed and breakfast.

Moulin de Saint Gabriel, Chambres d’hôte

Benoit Lechevallier showing the turbine engine of Saint Gabriel Mill Restoration of the 19th century Saint-Gabriel Flour Mill, Saint-Gabriel-Brecy, France

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A Garden Party at Brécy Castle

Articles, Events coverage

Garden Party during Patrimony Day 2018 to commemorate Barbara Wirth at Brécy Castle Gardens, Saint Gabriel Brécy, France.

A Garden Party at Brécy Castle

Patrimony Day in France happens once a year and enables curious visitors to see and experience treasures of French patrimony that are not typically open to the public.  This year, I had the pleasure of experiencing several special places dressed for the occasion under beautiful blue sky of mid-September all in one weekend.  The first and foremost is Brécy Castle Gardens, which I had already photographed in 2012 with a large format film camera.

This year, a private invitation was launched to commemorate the fifth year of the passing of Barbara Wirth.  Gardener extraordinaire, she and her husband Didier orchestrated the restoration of the gardens of Brécy from their purchase of the château in 1992.

We learn, in reading the marvelous and freshly published Florilegium of Brécy Garden by Béatrice Saalburg and Catherine Watters, that the key to the elegance of this garden is a striking harmony of “just enough” in Barbara’s selection of plants.  To complement graphically dominant yew, hornbeam and boxwood topiary, of which an intricate parterre de broderie on the ground level sets the stage for the terraces, Barbara added a savvy selection of roses, clematis, hellebore, lily and iris.  She chose the artichoke as a theme for the second terrace, enhanced by two fountains (baskets of artichokes) that she herself designed.  This delicate palette of color and textures is set before an impressive three-tiered original stone terrace and balustrade, the mineral aspect of which is complemented by the surrounding plants.

The garden was perfectly trimmed and the gravel paths carefully raked for this private celebration in honor of Barbara Wirth, strategically held beyond the confines of the internal garden.  Stepping beyond intricate stone pillars and an imposing wrought iron gate, we are sheltered by tall hedges and bell-shaped topiary on a hill that was completely raised and restructured by Didier Wirth.  Looking back from the top of this hill we have a view upon the gardens, château, chapel and fields beyond; a view which is framed by two long hedges and an overhang of beech trees.

If ever there was a visual association to make with the notion of “Fête Champêtre”, or Garden Party, this evening certainly encompassed it not only literally but figuratively.  A beautiful balmy evening, a perfectly groomed garden, large ice buckets full of champagne, home-made appetizers and fireworks at sunset; privileged visitors enjoyed a delicious moment in this dream world, basking in the memory of a passionate gardener and her faithful companion whose four green thumbs made all of this possible.

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Cross-Cultural Fairy Tales, or A Yarn Well-Spun

Articles, Blog article

Entrance to the Château de Maulmont, Saint-Priest-Bramefant, France.
The wedding couple enjoying their first dance.
The wedding couple enjoying their first dance.

Cross-Cultural Fairy Tales, or A Yarn Well-Spun

One fine Saturday in June the stage was set for a celebration of Love and Life at the historical Château de Maulmont located in the Auvergne region of France.  Having fallen in love with France first, and her husband-to-be second, my girlfriend discovered this quintessentially French hunting lodge not far from her fiancé’s native town of Vichy and planned a fabulous wedding party where their guests could lodge on premises. In a miniature re-enactment of a French Court assembly, she booked the entire château including rooms for family and friends traveling from afar, local friends with small children and couples who would enjoy partaking of a true Château experience.

Entrance to the Château de Maulmont,
Saint-Priest-Bramefant, France
Entrance to the Château de Maulmont, Saint-Priest-Bramefant, France

A little history about this charming location: Originally a Templar’s stronghold in the 13th century built by Renaud de Vichy after returning home from the crusades, the château was acquired by Guillaume de Maulmont in an exchange with Phillipe Le Bel (then King of France).  In 1829 it became the property of Princess Adelaïde Louise d’Orléans, sister of King Louis Philippe d’Orléans, who also owned the royal estate in Randan.  Princess Adelaïde demolished old Templar ruins and commissioned the construction a hunting lodge by the architect Pierre Fontaine (famous for designing the “Galerie des Batailles” in Versailles).  Maulmont was used as a hunting lodge by King Louis Philippe when he came to Randan with the Court.

Guests of the wedding party found themselves on a stunning promontory in a 19th century brick castle with oak molding from ceiling to floor, turrets and an interior courtyard with a panoramic view overlooking hill and dale.  While the civil ceremony was not conducive to introductions and exchange ( are they ever? ), the family-led exchange of vows held under a tent in the château garden and the subsequent two-day celebration presented beautiful opportunities for discovery and connecting.

Wedding Party Chateau de Maulmont, Vichy, France

A curious preference for being backstage, or the desire to be a fly on the wall rather than in the limelight, has propelled me to choose the camera as my visual storytelling tool.  It is a joy to watch a story unfold over time, weaving a complex and profound web of human relations, whether it be through my own children, friends, family or commissioned stories.  Therein lies the challenge; to exercise patience, observation, compassion and engagement in the story being told and with the actors telling it.

Elise Prudhomme photographing in Vichy gingham by Rodolphe Aymard
Elise Prudhomme photographing in Vichy gingham © photo Rodolphe Aymard

In this instance, as one of the actors myself, I was not expected to witness the event as a photographer.  Temptation was too strong, however, and I soon began to gather a collection of images “behind the scenes”.  While the official photographer photographed the bride and groom, I photographed the mingling of the groom’s childhood friends from Vichy with the bride’s childhood friends from Ohio, the bride’s friends from America meeting her Parisian friends, friends from Ohio found friends from Chicago and Seattle… worlds collided, spun together by the bride and groom’s spinning wheel.

In fine cross-cultural fairy tale tradition, a beautiful fair American fell in love with a handsome dark Frenchman, owner of the apartment that she was renting during a year-long photography course in Paris.  A year passed by and the photography class ended, to be replaced by a seven-year relationship that was celebrated one memorable day in June.  Family history in the making, photographs for the taking.

Wedding Reception at the Cercle de l’Union Interalliée

Blog article, Commissions, Events coverage, Interiors, Portraits

Table setting for formal dinner at wedding reception at the Cercle de l'Union Interalliée, Paris, France.

Georgina and Amal’s Wedding Reception at the Cercle de l’Union Interalliée

The mother of the bride called me to ask if I could photograph her daughter’s wedding reception at a beautiful venue in Paris, France – Le Cercle de l’Union Interalliée, and naturally I accepted.  What a thrill to penetrate the halls of such a venerable institution as this and for a perfect reason; to photograph a young couple about to engage in the vows of marriage.  Indeed the real wedding will take place in India, so this Parisian event was the only moment that friends and family unable to travel to India could celebrate the bride and groom to be.

A little history.  The Union Interalliée was founded in 1917 at the point when the United States entered into the war.  The founders conceived of a place where officers and personalities of the Allied nations could rejoin and give each other moral support and share resources.  Receiving support from many, they were able to acquire the hotel Henri de Rothschild in 1920 and thereby encourage diplomatic relations between the allied nations.  The building is situated on rue Faubourg Saint Honoré, just down the street from the Elysée Palace and is in beautiful condition.

I arrived early, as usual, and began to take photographs of the dining room bathed in warm afternoon sunlight.  In golden tones, the laid tables and flower arrangements by Maison Vertumne struck a harmonious chord for the upcoming event.  I was pleased to get a shot of the stepfather of the bride peacefully laying out place cards at the tables, evidently at home in this lovely building which he has frequented as a club member for years.

Little by little, guests began to fill up the halls and cocktail room and spill out onto the balcony overlooking a lush green garden below.  Champagne flowed, petits fours followed just behind, and I leapt at the opportunity for group portraits of family and friends come from all over the world including Singapore, India and the United States.   British-American-French Georgina and Indian-American-Singaporean Amal met at business school in England and are definitely globe trotters from polyglot families.  As the evening advanced, a chance encounter between a French and Indian guest revealed that they had known each other in university “What a small world!” was heard not once, but at several intervals.

Dinner and speeches followed, as well as a lovely song by the bride’s musician brother-in-law and his spouse.  It was amazing to see such a mixture of people melt into one happy family; but that is how it felt in retrospect.  One might venture to say that the founding spirit of the Union Interalliée was pervasive during the reunion of this exceptional family, lending force and emphasis to Georgina and Amal’s future together.  The evening left me wondering, dreamily, what the wedding in India will be like.

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Cruising with the Rough Riders

Commissions, Events coverage

Elise Prudhomme, photographer, on the catwalk of the USS Theodore Roosevelt during the Friends and Family Cruise on June 20, 2017.

Theodore Roosevelt Association Fundraising Dinner and Cruise on the USS Theodore Roosevelt

The Theodore Roosevelt Association published this 30-page spread in their Winter-Spring-Summer 2017 Journal.  This exceptional professional opportunity was handed to me by Tweed Roosevelt, the great-grandson of Theodore Roosevelt, when he hired me to photograph the annual Theodore Roosevelt Association fundraising dinner in San Diego followed by a day-cruise in the Pacific aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt.  The TR Association visits the nuclear aircraft carrier every 8 or 9 years, so this event was clearly not to be missed.

The fundraising dinner took place in Mission Valley and officers of the USS Theodore Roosevelt were invited.  Thus, before even boarding the vessel, members of the Theodore Roosevelt Association got a glimpse of the U.S. Navy in full splendor.

Officers of the USS Theodore Roosevelt at the TR Association cocktail in Mission Valley Hilton in San Diego, California on June 19, 2017.

From the Commanding Officer to the sailors, the crew of the USS Theodore Roosevelt was open, warm, friendly, and totally human.  Meeting with this team off-duty was a real treat for guests who were curious to learn more about their job and experience in the Navy.  Highly qualified specialists in many fields, this crew seamlessly communicated with everyone including a small group of youngsters eager to figure out if they could hack into the ship’s computer system! The ship’s Navigator Paul Hockran gave them a run for their money on that subject.

I covered two cocktails and two dinners simultaneously and especially enjoyed the presentations of the American Flag by the Color Guard. The evening ended on an upbeat note with a celebratory ‘hip-hip hooray’ for the ship and a speech by Tweed Roosevelt reminding guests that buses left at 5am the next morning for the naval base on Coronado.

Color Guard presents the American Flag during the Theodore Roosevelt Association dinner, Hilton Mission Valley, San Diego, CA, June 18, 2017.

Color Guard presents the American Flag during the Theodore Roosevelt Association dinner, Hilton Mission Valley, San Diego, CA, June 18, 2017.

The next day (which started as announced at 5 am on the dot) was a memorable experience aboard one of the most powerful and complex ships that mankind has ever constructed.

The Nimitz-class carriers are, and have been, the backbone of U.S. military power since the 60’s when Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara decided to switch to nuclear power for future warships on the premise that they incur lower operating costs over their service lifetimes.  This has proved to be the case: the service life of the ten Nimitz carriers that have been built over a thirty-year period extends through the 2050’s, or 80 consecutive years.  Another benefit to nuclear powered carriers is speed and maneuverability; the ships move at over thirty-knots, accelerate and decelerate faster than a conventional ship and can cruise indefinitely.

Looking back on San Diego from the flight deck of the USS Theodore Roosevelt on June 19, 2017.

Looking back on San Diego from the flight deck of the USS Theodore Roosevelt on June 19, 2017.

Launched in 1984, the USS Theodore Roosevelt is the fourth Nimitz-class carrier and the first to be built using modular construction whereby components were constructed separately and welded together.   Known affectionately as “The Big Stick”, her radio call sign is Rough Rider, the nickname of President Theodore Roosevelt’s volunteer cavalry unit during the Spanish-American war.  The ship weighs approximately 97,000 tons without the habitual six dozen high-performance aircraft and 120,000 tons with.   It is a veritable floating city run by 5,000 sailors and runs an impressive gamut of multi-missions from military defense, disaster relief and humanitarian aid, surveillance and intelligence to naval and coastal security.

Representing a 10 billion dollar investment, U.S. aircraft carriers are considered lucrative targets by military experts; however, visitors aboard we were reminded of the formidable aspects which make aircraft carriers difficult to attack.  Displacing 100,000 tons of water while constantly moving when deployed, carriers can outrun submarines.  Finding and tracking them is difficult as they are covered in roughly 200,000 gallons of special undetectable gray paint which makes the carrier look like a sailboat on a radar.  We spent all day climbing ladders to the 25 decks (250 feet high in total) and walking through watertight compartments and were told that conventional torpedoes were unlikely to pierce through the thousands of tons of armor.  The vessel was towed out to sea, but following close in its wake were several armed high-speed boats and a military helicopter.  Sailors on the flight deck were armed at ready throughout the day.


Carriers typically deploy as part of a “carrier strike group” which includes several missile-guided warships, helicopters and other multi-layered defensive shields working together through a very sophisticated combat system called Aegis.

Of course, an aircraft carrier is only as formidable as the efficiency and professionalism of the crew running it.  I had the exceptional opportunity of meeting Commanding Officer Craig Clapperton, who took command of the USS Theodore Roosevelt in 2015.  Captain Clapperton really impressed us with a thorough presentation of the ship and its operations during a private tour of the Captain’s quarters where the considerable collection of Theodore Roosevelt items (letter, photographs, bust, paintings…) contributed to the ambiance of the ship’s namesake.

Captain Craig Clapperton in the Commanding Officer’s quarters of the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) surrounded by Theodore Roosevelt memorabilia and portrait.

Since our visit, Clapperton has been named Commander of the Naval Air Force (CNAF).  At the Change of Command ceremony, Captain Clapperton who called his crew the “Rough Riders” said of his team:  “The challenges this crew has faced over the last two years are truly extraordinary,” he said. “The men and women of Theodore Roosevelt are exceptional warriors and leaders. Their hard work made our Navy readier and made the world a safer place. I feel truly privileged to have had the opportunity to serve as the commanding officer of the Big Stick and to operate with this incredible team.”

Interior shot of the bridge and a 20-year old sailor at the helm of the USS Theodore Roosevelt.

Interior shot of the bridge and a 20-year old sailor at the helm of the USS Theodore Roosevelt.

TR Association members were moved by the kindness and dedication of the crew who showed us around the ship and explained their diverse roles aboard a self-sufficient vessel capable of staying out to sea for months at a time.  The intricacy of operations aboard from daily life to maneuvers on the bridge was shown to us.  I spent considerable time on the bridge with Tweed Roosevelt and was amazed at how many people were in operation at the same time, including a very young female sailor who was at the helm.

At the end of an exhausting but stimulating day, I was amused to discover a small intriguing museum dedicated to Theodore Roosevelt right next to the hangar and Bully the Moose; a taxidermy feat since Bully’s antlers were apparently reduced down in size to fit into the allowable space on the ship!  Having just met major league baseball player Rick Sutcliffe on the bridge with Captain Clapperton, I left the USS Theodore Roosevelt satisfied that it had been an All-Star day.

Visitor encounters Bully the Moose aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt on June 19, 2017.

Visitor encounters Bully the Moose aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt on June 19, 2017.

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Exhibition Opening of Exposed [À découvert] at Studio Galerie B&B during Mois de la Photo OFF 2017


Elise Prudhomme exhibits at Studio Galerie B&B during Mois de la Photo OFF 2017.

Exhibition Opening of Exposed [À découvert]

Using a medium format film camera, I conceived, shot (using myself as a model) and hand-developed these photographs during travels in the United States, Italy and Switzerland from 1988 – 1991.  The silver-gelatin prints were made by myself in a traditional analog darkroom in 2014 – 2015.  You can see this series during the Mois de la Photo OFF (Photography Month OFF) from 28 March to 23 April at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris, France.

Here are a few images of the exhibition and opening.

Studio Galerie B&B
6 bis rue des Récollets – 75010 Paris

Exposed [À découvert] | Exhibition during Mois de la Photo OFF at Studio Galerie B&B


Exhibition Poster for Exposed (A découvert) at Studio Galerie B&B from 28 March to 23 April 2017

Exposed [À découvert] exhibited during Mois de la Photo OFF from 28 March – 23 April 2017

In the midst of a garden, of the forest, perched on a tree branch or lodged in the shade of foliage, the naked body, divinely animal, inscribes itself in the order of nature.  But is there a place for it in the order of the real? The artist does not seem quite freed from this nostalgia of fusion with the maternal realm. For a moment, hidden at the top of a tree-refuge, she becomes a bird. The photographer’s eye forges unceasing images of a paradise where recovering the voluptuousness of flight proper to creation is the greatest desire. – translated from the text by Patricia Bourcillier

Exposed is the first part of a body of work that I began in the 80s on the exploration of self and the photographic medium. It is followed, in the 90s, by a more intimate series called Self-consciousness.

Au milieu d’un jardin, de la forêt, perché sur la branche d’un arbre ou lové à l’ombre du feuillage, le corps nu, divinement animal, s’inscrit dans l’ordre de la nature. Mais y a-t-il sa place dans l’ordre du réel ? De cette nostalgie de fusion avec le royaume des mères, l’artiste ne semble pas tout à fait sortie. Le temps d’un instant, cachée au plus haut d’un arbre-refuge, elle devient oiseau. Son oeil de photographe forge sans relâche des images du paradis où s’exprime le désir de recouvrer la Volupté de l’envol propre à la création. – Patricia Bourcillier

A découvert est le premier volet d’un travail débuté dans les années 80 sur l’exploration de soi et du médium de la photographie.  Il sera suivi, dans les années 90, par un travail plus intime intitulé Auto-conscience.

Exposition du 28 mars au 23 avril 2017
Vernissage le mardi 28 mars de 18h à 21h

Studio Galerie B&B
6 bis rue des Récollets – 75010 Paris

Exhibition opening of Wild Wild West at Studio Galerie B&B


Elise Prudhomme exhibits new color work from her series "Wild Wild West" at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris, France.

Exhibition Opening of Wild Wild West | Studio Galerie B&B

It was another memorable full-house at Studio Galerie B&B for the exhibition opening of “A Little Further West” (Un peu plus à l’ouest) featuring black and white photographs by Philippe Bachelier “Ouessantine Promenades” and new color work by Elise Prudhomme from her series Wild Wild West.  Here are a few photos taken during the evening!

The show is on until 23 December 2016 and will reopen in January 2017.

Studio Galerie B&B
6 bis rue des Récollets – 75010 Paris

Wild Wild West | Exhibition at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris


Elise Prudhomme photography exhibition entitled Wild Wild West

Elise Prudhomme photography exhibition entitled Wild Wild West

Elise Prudhomme exhibits new color work from her series “Wild Wild West” at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris, France.

Wild Wild West | Exhibition at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris from 13 – 23 December 2016

Honoring the centennial of America’s National Park Service, Elise Prudhomme presents “Wild Wild West” a contemporary study of Western American landscapes faced with man’s appropriation of them.  While contemplating the landscape definitely involves an aesthetic act, appropriating the landscape implies an act of transformation. Transformed into places of recreation, habitation or consumption, the evolution of these landscapes reveals a new picturesque.

A l’occasion du centenaire pour la création des Parcs Nationaux aux Etats-Unis, Elise Prudhomme présente « Wild Wild West » une étude contemporaine sur les paysages d’Amérique de l’Ouest face à l’homme qui se les approprie. Tandis que contempler le paysage signifie assurément faire intervenir un acte esthétique, s’approprier le paysage implique un acte de transformation. Transformés en lieux de récréation, habitation ou consommation, il en résulte de nos paysages d’aujourd’hui un nouveau pittoresque.

Exposition du 13 au 23 décembre 2016
Vernissage le mardi 13 décembre de 18h à 21h

Studio Galerie B&B
6 bis rue des Récollets – 75010 Paris

Modern residence and garden by Taliesin West architect

Architecture, Blog article, Decoration, Interiors

A modern example of Organic Architecture by Taliesin West architect

This modern residence and formal garden located in Western Oregon was designed and constructed by a graduate of the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture at Taliesin West.  His interest in learning the principles of Organic Architecture, as Frank Lloyd Wright referred to his own work, is underlined by Wright’s words; “Learn the principles and do not copy me.”

The principles of Organic Architecture encompass an overall design process where everything relates to one another both on the inside and the outside. The relationship of the building to its natural surroundings is as important as the details in its interior – from the windows, to the floors, to the furniture that fills the space. Organic Architecture covers the construction materials, motifs and design principles which work together as a unified whole to build a central mood and theme.

The fundamental design of this architect’s home which includes broad cantilevers, horizontal lines and open interior space, all strong elements of Organic Architecture, give this private residence a ‘Wright look’.  After twenty one years, this house still maintains that timeless quality that Frank Lloyd Wright’s homes are known for.

A quote from the Japanese ‘Book of Tea’ says it simply: “The reality of a building does not consist in the roof and walls but the space within to be lived in.”

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The Gordon House | Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian vision

Architecture, Blog article

The Gordon House | Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian vision

The Oregon Garden welcomed one of the last of the ‘Usonian’ home series designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1957 for Evelyn and Conrad Gordon, The Gordon House, which its 2001 owners wished to tear down. The building was dismantled and restored to its new environment in Silverton.

Designed for the American working-class consumer, a Usonian home was a small, single-story house constructed with native materials. It had a flat roof and cantilevered overhangs for energy efficiency and clerestory windows to enhance the visual relationship between interior and exterior. A carport (word coined by Wright) served to shelter a parked vehicle. These homes, of which Wright designed about sixty, are considered to be an aesthetic precursor to ranch-style dwellings.

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Exhibition Opening of Exposed [À Découvert] | Studio Galerie B&B


Exhibition Opening of Exposed [À Découvert] | Studio Galerie B&B

Here are a few glimpses of the exhibition opening for my new fine art series Exposed [À Découvert]. We had a fabulous time! There was barely a crumb left for a mouse at the end of the evening and the fogged in windows told the “tail”.

This series is on exhibit at Studio Galerie B&B in Paris from 8 – 25 December 2015.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Friday 3pm to 8pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am – 7pm.

Studio Galerie B&B 6 bis rue des Récollets 75010 Paris