March 31, 2017

French Friday: Au Bon Marché

 le 31 mars 2017 (090/366)

« Quand on y songe, les grands magasins 
sont un peu comme des musées. » ~ Andy Warhol

Le Bon Marché, Paris' oldest department store (1852), is not as grand or as ornate as Les Galeries Lafayette or Printemps on the Rive Droite, but therein lies its charm. The inventory is well-edited and the sales people are friendly and accommodating. A Chanel make-up artist even gifted me a lovely, red cosmetic case because I spoke French with him (apparently unlike many American tourists). In addition un peu de shopping, I enjoyed the unique art installation by Ciharu Shiota, Where are we going? -- a series of beautiful sculptures created with string. I was also amused by the Loïc Prigent pop-up shop entitled Entendu au Bon Marché. The black and white postcards, caps, T-shirts, and mugs feature quotes like "Where is the central escalator?" (Hard to miss!) and "May I have some Champagne so I can take a selfie?"-- things that the documentary filmmaker and journalist has actually heard in the Rive Gauche store. Le Bon Marché is the perfect juxtaposition of Belle Epoque architecture and modern style.