Sunday, August 10, 2008

Some Interesting Links


Forgive me for straying off topic, but there are several items on the Web today that may reward a moment of your attention even if they have little or nothing to do with French politics. The first is an article by Nina Khrushcheva, who writes about the link between the 2008 Olympic Games and the 1936 edition. The parallels are eerie: not only have the games been appropriated for purposes of national self-glorification; not only has the aestheticization of the political been carried to extremes by a talented filmmaker turned impresario of the spectacular; but also, and more surprisingly, Albert Speer Jr., the son of Hitler's architect, was employed by the Chinese to design the master plan for the 2008 Games. "Of course the sins of the father should never be visited on the son," Khrushcheva adds--and, as the granddaughter of Nikita Khrushchev, she knows whereof she speaks. A fascinating piece.

The second item is a collection of photos from the Paris photo agency Roger-Viollet. The Roger-Viollet shop has always fascinated me, as you can see from the picture above, which I took through the shop's front window two weeks ago in Paris. It shows the ancient file folders in which the hundreds of thousands of photos in the R-V collection are classified, folders with titles of Borgesian incongruity that jump from "Accidents de Route" to "Allégories," for example. You can view a breathtaking sample of R-V photos here. For those who are in Paris, the shop is located behind the Institut, next to the statues of Voltaire and Montesquieu on the rue de Seine.

Finally, I was encouraged to write about Roger-Viollet by Polly Lyman's notes on another favorite Paris shop, Deyrolle, which recently suffered a fire. A friend told me that the neighbors have taken up a collection to help restore the Deyrolle collections.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Art, here is another off-topic link you might find interesting. The CFTC, a union whose continued existence baffles me, has done something fresh and funny to attract members in the face of possible extinction due to the new representation laws for unions: http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.channel&ChannelID=338060373
Seven skits about the blocked "social elevator". Best union propaganda I have seen. Check it out.
Nick

Unknown said...

Thanks, Nick.

Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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